I use the weights but I am including volumes as well.
- 1 cup warm water (8.34 oz or 237 grams)
- 3/4 tablespoon molasses (or 1 full tablespoon of honey if you don’t like the taste of molasses)
- 1 packet active dry yeast — I prefer Red Star brand. (2 1/4 teaspoons or 7 grams)
- 2 cups whole wheat flour (9oz by weight or 256 grams)
- 1 cup unbleached, high gluten bread flour (4.5 oz by weight or 128 grams)
- 1/4 cup nonfat dry powdered milk (never checked the weight on this, if anyone has a good 60-70% humidity weight for milk powder let me know in a comment)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon sea or kosher salt ground fine – any non-iodized salt is fine (1/4 oz / 7grams)
- Place the warm water, molasses (or honey), and yeast in a bowl of your stand mixer.
- Let stand 10 minutes. Mixture will foam and bubble – this means the yeast is active and alive. If it doesn’t, dump it and try again.
- In a separate bowl, combine the whole wheat and bread flours with powdered milk and salt.
- Add one cup of the flour mixture to the yeast mixture with the unsalted butter. Use a flat/paddle beater on low to mix until smooth. This can take a full minute or more in a humid kitchen.
- Continue adding the remaining flour mixture, at one half cup at a time and not adding more until its mixed completely — about 45-60 seconds per addition. When no flour is visible you can add the next addition. The dough at first will be a batter, and slowly as the flour is added it will become a dough.
- After all the flour mixture has been incorporated and the dough has become a complete ball that clears the sides of the mixing bowl, switch to the dough hook.
- Knead on medium speed for an additional 3 minutes.
- Put ball into a lightly oiled large bowl (I prefer Pam type spray for this since uses less oil) cover tightly with plastic wrap. Allow to sit at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 to 2 hours depending on the temperature. It will rise faster in a warmer place but slower will give a better taste and texture.
- Lightly coat two 8x4x3-inch loaf pans with unsalted butter or cooking spray while you wait.
- Uncover and GENTLY deflate the dough by pressing gently (never punch dough that will be used sliced for sandwiches) until its about half of the risen size.
- Divide into 2 equal portions (you can eyeball it but I prefer to go by weight since it will ensure that the loaves rise and bake at the same speed).
- Shape into loaves and place in pans. Cover again and let rise until nearly doubled.
- About 30 minutes before baking, preheat oven to 375F and let oven stay on at 375F for at least 15 minutes before baking.
- Place loaves in preheated oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until bread is browned and sounds hollow when tapped and has an internal temperature of at least 190F taken by probe from the side lip of the pan.
- Immediately remove from loaf pans and cool Completetly on a wire rack.
- Like all breads, allow it to cool completely before cutting. Fresh baked bread smells delicious and the tempation to cut right in is great, but letting fully cool to the core allows the starch matrix to set completely. If you cut warm bread the starches will bind together and the bread near the cut and possibly the whole loaf will be gummy and pastey. If the crust is too crispy for your taste, brush with butter or olive oil soon as its out of the oven.
- If you do not have a stand mixer I highly recommend you look into the No Kneading Bread methods. If time is on your side you can make some excellent breads with no special equipment and no real effort by using time as a tool. More info and videos here at Breadtopia.
- Finally, remember that nothing makes better bread than making bread often. As the yeast balance in your kitchen changes with more frequent bread making the crust and texture of your breads will get better and better.