Whole Wheat French Country Bread The Washington Post from whole wheat french bread recipe , image source: www.washingtonpost.com
- 125 ml Warm water (1/2 US cup)
- 125 ml Warm milk (1/2 US cup)
- 50 ml Olive oil or melted butter (about 3 Tbsp)
- 7 g active dry yeast (2 tsp)
- 10 g brown sugar or honey (2 tsp)
- 300 g Whole wheat flour (2 heaping cups)
- 200 g All-purpose flour (1 2/3 cups)
- 10 g Salt (2 tsp)
- 1/2 cup Chopped nuts (walnuts, hazelnuts are nice)
- 1 beaten egg for brushing top (not necessary but gives bread extra color)
- Optional toppings: rolled oats, sesame seeds, etc.
- If not chopped already, chop up your nuts into smaller pieces. Walnuts are nice, or use a mix of your favorites 🙂
- In a small pot, mix milk, water and olive oil/butter. Heat until warm (but not hot!) on low heat. Take of heat and mix in honey/sugar and yeast until dissolved. Warm water is important to activate the yeast so don’t use cold!
- Let the liquid sit for 5-10 minutes. You should get little bubbles or foam from the yeast starting to be active.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together wheat flour and regular flour.
- Pour in the liquid mixture, then add the salt last. Start mixing and folding with a spatula to bring the dough together.
- You want the dough to be moist but not sticky. If the dough is too dry or powdery, add add just a little more milk or water (try a Tablespoon or two at a time). Once the dough comes together, it’s ready to knead!
- Dust your kneading surface with plenty of flour and place the ball of dough onto it. Also, dust your hands with plenty of flour to prevent the dough from sticking.
- First, flatten out the dough a little bit and gently press in the nuts.
- To knead, fold in the outer edges of the dough toward the center and press down with the palm of your hand each time. Repeat…
- Keep folding over and pressing, while rotating the dough around so you can form a big ball.
- Knead this way for 10 minutes or so until the dough is fairly smooth.
- Once finished, you’ll have a ball of dough which should be smooth on top and have creases from folding on the bottom.
- Grease the mixing bowl with just a little oil and put in the ball of dough, crease-side down. Brush the top with a little oil too to help prevent drying.
- Cover with wrap and set in a warm spot or warm oven for about 1 hour – 1.5 hours. The dough should rise to about double.
- Squish out the air and shape into the shape you want (e.g. a round or oval loaf). Place on the baking sheet.
- Beat an egg with a Tablespoon of water and brush top of dough with it. If adding toppings like rolled oats, sesame seeds, etc., sprinkle on desired amount. The egg will give the bread a nice brown color and hold on any toppings while baking but isn’t necessary.
- Let dough rise for another 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F/190°C. Bake for 30-40 minutes (mine only took 30 minutes). Let cool on a rack for a few minutes before digging in!
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