Homemade Whole Grain Bread: Makes 2 loaves

Starter Dough:

2 cups cooked whole grains
2 cups water
¼ cup cold-pressed vegetable oil
1 tbsp sea salt
1 tbsp dry yeast
1 cup whole wheat flour

Blend grains and water in a blender or food processor until creamy; pour into a large mixing bowl. Mix in oil, salt, and yeast. Add enough flour to make the mixture look like thick cooked cereal. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and leave for 12-24 hours at room temperature. Once the dough is fermented, it can be refrigerated for up to a week before using to make bread.

To Make Bread:

¼ cup barley malt or maple syrup
2 cups whole wheat flour
3-4 cups unbleached white flour or whole wheat flour

After the 12-24 hours, add sweetener to starter dough and stir. Add whole wheat flour, stirring it in. as you add the white flour, the mixture will be too difficult to stir. Knead it by hand in the bowl and continue to add white flour. When dough is less sticky, transfer it to a floured surface and knead 10-15 minutes or until dough is soft and springy, but not too sticky.

Wash and dry mixture bowl and oil it. Place dough in bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place 1 ½ -2 hours.

To Make Loaves:

Lightly oil 2 loaf pans. Divide dough in half. Punch down and loaf the dough in the following way:

Flatten half of the dough into a square on your working surface. Press all of the air out of the dough by vigorously slapping the dough with the palms of both hands.

Fold the flattened dough into a triangle and press it down again.

Fold 2 corners into the center and press again.

Fold the top point into the body of the dough and press it down again.

Pick up the dough with both hands and begin rolling it into itself. This stretches the outside of the dough and creates a tight roll with no air pockets. Seal the seam by flattening it with the heel of your hand.

Shape the dough into a nice loaf and place in the pan seam side down. Repeat punching down and shaping with the other half of dough.

To Bake the Bread:

1 tsp water
1 tsp barley malt or maple syrup
1 tsp cold-pressed vegetable oil
¼ tsp sea salt

Mix water, syrup, oil, and salt in a small cup or bowl and coat the top of each loaf with this mixture. Cover and let rise in pans for 45-60 minutes until the loaves have doubled in size. Test the bread for readiness. If you press the dough and it wants to stay in, but still has a little spring, it’s ready to bake. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 45-50 minutes. Bread will come out of pan after 5 minutes of cooling. Let it cool 30 minutes before slicing.

From: Feeding the Whole Family

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