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Old 02-05-2010, 09:40 AM   #1
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Mamas who bake their own bread...

I have been baking all of our bread for a little over a year. We like whole wheat but I'm having some problems getting it to rise enough. I use home-ground wheat so I've wondered if I'm grinding it on the wrong setting or something (it isn't the finest setting or the coarsest--it's right in the middle). I've recently started adding vital wheat gluten and that has helped with the texture a little but the rising is still not great.

I tried making a honey oatmeal bread with oats and white flour (just to prove to myself that I CAN make good bread) and it turned out beautiful. But once I started adding my wheat flour...bricks.

I talked to my mom about it because she always baked our bread and she told me that she never actually did 100% whole wheat. She always mixed it with white. (Who knew?)

Do any of you make 100% whole wheat bread? If you have a fool proof recipe, I'd love to have it.

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Old 02-05-2010, 09:53 PM   #2
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

I don't have it handy right now, but I do have a 100% whole wheat bread recipe that is really nice. I'm wondering if you are not grinding fine enough though. If it's too coarse, it cuts right through the gluten, which is what you need to make your bread rise. Also, make sure you are adding just barely enough flour. Do you use a mixer, or do it all by hand?
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:33 AM   #3
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

I have a good recipe too that I will look for. I will say though that I always use 1/2 cup less flour than it calls for to get a good rise and keep it from being so dense, so you might try that on your existing recipe.
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Old 02-06-2010, 08:39 AM   #4
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

I don't know why they even list a flour amount in recipes anyway, unless it's by weight. It's just not accurate to measure flour out for bread!
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Old 02-06-2010, 10:26 AM   #5
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

I have a bread recipe on my blog that I have been making with 100% home ground whole wheat for the past month or so. The only change I made was adding an extra Tbs of sugar. It was tricky at first because I found the the freshly ground wheat was a lot fluffier than a bag of flour, so it was hard to get the right amount of flour in the dough (I had never weighed the flour before with white flour). If it is too wet, it rises then collapses.

I also switched to grinding on the pastry setting instead of the one marked for bread (in the middle). That seems to have helped as well.
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Old 02-06-2010, 10:33 AM   #6
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

This is the bosch recipe I use...Called Foolproof.

I pre-heat the oven to 120.

Then I mix
4 cups warm water
1 TB salt
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup honey (use the same measuring cup for the honey you used on the oil and it just slides right out).
1 1/2 TB Dough Enhancer (I've also just used gluten before if that was all I had)
2 TB saf yeast
Then I slowly mix in my flour. It is about 7 cups wheat kernels freshly ground somewhere close to eight cups of ground flour. Flour is important, better to add to little than to much.

The kneading if the vital part of making 100% whole wheat flour. I used to have bricks as well. I never was able to knead it it enough by hand to get my dough elastic. So I save up and bought a bosch on ebay. I know people who are ok with a kitchen aid. You just need a mixer with a lot of power. I let the dough knead for ten minutes in the mixer, until the gluten is developed and the dough is elastic. Then I pinch off three loves, shape them and put them in the greased pan. I turn the oven off and stick the loves in the oven to rise for 25 minutes. Then I turn the oven on to 350 for 30-35 minutes. Pull and eat.

If I had to guess I'd say you aren't getting your dough kneading enough for the gluten to develop or you are possibly adding to much flour. I'd ask around and find a friend who makes bread. It took me actually feeling what dough should feel like before it goes in the pan to understand what was going wrong with my own. Good luck!
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Old 02-06-2010, 10:49 AM   #7
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

Oh yes! Kneading for 10 minutes is very important! Don't skimp on kneading.
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Old 02-08-2010, 06:22 AM   #8
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

Thank you all so much for your advice. It's true that home ground wheat is much fluffier so that may be my problem because it does rise and then fall. I use a Kitchenaid and I do let it knead for a good long time because I have heard that makes a difference. My mom recently gave me some dough enhancer so I may try that as well. Dang it, I am going to make this work!
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Old 02-09-2010, 07:50 AM   #9
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceslade View Post
So I save up and bought a bosch on ebay. I know people who are ok with a kitchen aid. You just need a mixer with a lot of power.
i never even heard of that mixer. i always thought kitchen aid was the top of the line. i am going to check it out. well maybe i better not because i will end up having it have it.
I use my food processor to make bread but it only makes 1 loaf a time.
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Old 02-10-2010, 09:10 AM   #10
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Re: Mamas who bake their own bread...

Whole Wheat Bread

2 1/2 tsp instant yeast OR 1 packet active dry yeast dissolved in 2 tbsp water
1 1/3 cups lukewarm water
1/4 cup oil (or agave nectar)
1/4 cup honey
3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/4 tsp salt

Mix all together in one bowl and then knead on oiled surface until smooth
Put back in bowl, Cover (i use a wet towel) and let rise for about an hour (does not need to be doubled)
shape into loaf and put in pan (cover loosely with plastic wrap until bread has risen about 1/4 to 1/2 inch above pan)

bake at 350 for 20 minutes then cover with tin foil
bake for another 20 minutes
test for doneness by thumping on bottom of pan, if it sounds hollow, it's done!

This bread is AMAZING! and I use all wheat flour
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