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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Cheater's guide to homemade whole wheat bread

I love making fresh bread, but I cheat just a little.... 

I use a bread machine.

These bad boys have been around for a while now and can be picked up cheap at garage sales or thrift stores.  Usually they can be had for $10 or less when bought used.

I own two.  Now, I bought the first one a few years ago at a garage sale.  It served me well.  It cooked up hundreds of steaming loaves.  It got so well used that it started to jiggle around a lot while stirring the dough. So much jiggling, in fact, that one day it took a walk off the counter, pulled it's own plug out of the outlet, and smashed to the floor.  The lid hinge shattered, but I'll be darned if that thing doesn't have 9 lives.  I just layed the lid on it and it still worked like a charm.  By this time, though, I was nervous.  I figured that machine had already used several of it's lives and didn't have much longer to live.

So I bought a backup at a thrift store for $5.  It looked brand new.

This machine, it turns out, is a major step up.  It has a one-hour cooking feature!  No kidding.  I dump in the ingredients, hit the buttons, listen to it whir, smell that yummy fresh bread baking, and then we can eat it only an hour later. (Well, really it's supposed to cool for 15 minutes after baking before slicing but sometimes I cheat there, too.  Can you blame me?)

The secret to making whole wheat bread is to use a couple different types of flour.  A regular whole wheat flour and a higher gluten whole wheat flour (I use "Wheat Montana's Prairie Gold").

The ingredients must go into the bread machine in a certain order.  The wet ingredients first (water, oil) followed by the dry ingredients (flour, salt, sugar), and last the yeast.

Then push a button and say a quick prayer.  With any luck, you'll end up with a beautiful, delicious loaf.

100% Whole Wheat Bread (bread machine) 

3 cups regular whole wheat flour
1 cup higher gluten whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tablespoons canola oil
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 1/4 teaspoons dry active yeast


  1. Lol, thanks Lynn! It's nice to know others enjoy the convenience of a bread machine.