Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Whole wheat goodness

Over the past few days I've made a couple of loaves of bread from scratch. The first loaf I tried was a white bread, no-knead recipe that I followed to the letter. The second time I decided to get a little creative. The bread turned out fairly dense, with a fine crumb and a fantastic crispy, crunchy crust. With the antioxidants in the flaxseed, this will be my submission to Sweetnicks' ARF/5-a-day roundup this week.

Wheat & Flaxseed No-Knead Bread
1 1/2 c unbleached all purpose flour, plus a little more for working the dough later
1 1/2 c whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp active dry yeast
2 Tbsp ground flaxseed
1 heaping Tbsp honey (I used a nice local wildflower honey)
1 3/4 c water

Mix all the dry ingredients in a big bowl. Add the honey and the water, and mix just until the dough comes together in a big ball. Cover the bowl with a clean dishtowel and leave alone for 12 hours. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and sprinkle with a little flour to keep it from sticking to your hands. Pull the blob of dough from one end into the center, turn and repeat. Do this until all four edges have been folded into the center. Turn it over so that the "seam" is on the bottom and pat the dough into a circle shape. Cover it again with the dishtowel and let it rise for another hour.

Preheat oven to 500 with a 5 1/2 qt round covered dutch oven inside the oven while it heats. When the oven is preheated and the dough disk has risen for another hour, put the dough in the dutch oven and cook, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for another 10 minutes. Immediately remove the bread from the dutch oven and put it on a rack to cool. Leave it alone until it is completely cooled or you just can't stand it anymore and have to try it (it will cut much better when it's cooled).

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