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My Bread Endeavor: Olive Whole Wheat Bread

Posted Jan 23 2012 8:07pm

Last year about this time I was planning away trying to find the best bread recipe to use during our 10 Day Real Food Challenge . My husband and I had taken a vow to not buy bread from the grocery but to instead make the time to bake our own.

Well, flash forward a year and I'm still at it- except for a short burn out time where we did buy from the store. I've played around with a few recipes to finally land on my favorite sandwich bread. It only has 6 ingredients involved in the main recipe- milk, yeast, olive oil, honey, salt and flour. I sometimes add other ingredients like oatmeal or sunflower seeds but my husband would prefer an unadulterated bread for his sandwiches.

This specific evening I branched out and added olives (HA- get it- "branched out" and olives?). It made for a nice accompaniment to our meal. Before it was completely baked, I brushed some water on the crust and sprinkled a little course sea salt on top. Yum- perfect flavor!

Simple Whole Wheat Bread
(makes 2 loaves)

2 cups of warm milk
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 honey ( play around with this amount. I like mine less sweet)
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp salt

Add yeast, oil and honey to the warm milk (warm- not hot!). Let sit for 5 minutes or so. In a stand up mixer bowl or in a regular bowl pour milk and yeast mixture then gradually add flour and salt. Stir with spoon before turning on the mixer (make sure dough hook is attached) or continue to stir until dry and liquid combine together. If using a mixer, turn to medium high and let the dough hook knead the bread for about 4-6 minutes. Sometimes depending on humidity, the dough may still be sticky and wet. If this is the case, then add one tablespoon of flour at a time until dough becomes smooth to touch. Cover dough with towel and let rest for 15 minutes.

Next, divide dough into two loaves- either loaf shape or other desired shape and let rise for 30 minutes covered in a draft free area. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Dough should double in size.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until slightly brown on top.

Olive Bread

Follow above recipe but add in 1 cup of diced of your choice of olives- I used Kalamata-  to dough before splitting into loaves.

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