Friday, April 13, 2012
In a large bowl, combine:
5 c. warm water
4 T. yeast
6 T. sweetener (agave, honey, molasses, palm sugar...)
Set aside for about 5 mins. and let the yeast get frothy
Once the yeast has activated, add:
2 T. sea salt
6 T. oil (I've used coconut oil and olive oil...both are great)
Stir to incorporate, then add:
10 c. Ultragrain flour (if you can't find this, that's ok...I've used King Arthurs white whole wheat flour before, and have gotten pretty good results...it will be a heavier bread though.)
1/2 c. vital wheat gluten (this is usually in the baking aisle...don't skip this ingredient)
Stir until everything is incorporated, and turn out onto a heavily floured surface.
Knead for about 3-5 minutes, adding a little more flour if it starts to stick. You'll know when you can stop kneading, because the texture of the dough changes from sticky to stretchy. You should be able to feel it come together.
Grease your mixing bowl, and put the dough back into it. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap, or a clean dish towel, and let raise until it has doubled in size. (Depends how warm your kitchen is...may only take 45 mins...it could take up to 1 1/2 hrs.)
Turn back out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide into 4-5 equal sections (some bread pans are slightly bigger than others, so you can do 4 loaves with those, or 5 of the slightly smaller ones).
Punch down each section into a rough rectangle shape, and tightly roll into a log, pinching the seam to seal. With the palm of your hand, squeeze each end of the log to release the air bubbles, and fold up, pinching off the seams to seal. When you flip your log over, you should have something that slightly resembles a loaf of bread.
Place each "log" into a greased bread pan, cover, and let raise for about 25-30 mins (or until they are as big as you want them.)
Bake at 350 for 25-30 mins (when you tap on them, they should sound hollow...that's how you know they're done)
Remove from oven, remove from pan, and place on a cooling rack. Brush the tops with olive oil or vegan butter (optional).
If you can wait for them to cool before cutting them, that's best, but if you can't, just be gentle :)
This will make 4-5 loaves...I personally double this and make 8-9 at a time, then freeze them. If you're going to make the mess, you might as well only have to do it once a month! (And trust me...this is so good, you'd be surprised at how quickly you go through this!)