I love oven fresh bread but I don’t bake bread often. I mostly make homemade bread when I make pepperpot, once or twice a year. So when, one of my subscribers asked for a bread recipe and wanted a whole wheat version, I was super excited to get in the kitchen. I know, I know. I must be some kind of crazy person that gets excited about baking. But, I really do.
For this recipe I made a video tutorial. As usual there is no audio, so don’t adjust your volume. :-).
Whole Wheat Plait Loaf (Makes 1 loaf)
4 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp dry active yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup butter
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp oil (for oiling the bowl)
Combine 1 tbsp brown sugar, yeast and water in a small bowl. Mix until sugar dissolves. Let sit until yeast ferments (about 5 minutes). Combine milk and butter in a measuring cup. Microwave on high until butter melts. Set aside and let cool. When cool add fermented yeast. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, remaining brown sugar and salt. Mix together. Then, make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add milk and yeast mixture to the dry ingredients. Knead together to make a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface and continue to knead for 5 to 10 minutes. Shape into a tight ball. Place in a grease bowl, cover with a damp paper towel and let sit until dough doubles in size (about 1 hour). After dough rises to double its size, separate into 3 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a strip. Plait strips together. Place plaited dough into a greased loaf pan. Cover with a damp paper towel and let sit until doubles in size. Once dough doubles, brush with a bit of water and bake for 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. When bread is golden brown, remove from oven and brush top with butter. Remove from pan and let cool.
Tips and Ramblings:
1. I live in dry Denver that is also 5280 feet above sea level, so bread baking is often a challenge. I brush the top of my bread with water to prevent it from getting crusty while baking. I also bake it low and slow. Most bread recipes will say bake at 375 or 400 degrees. Try this temperature first and if for some reason it doesn’t work you can increase the heat.