honey oatmeal bread

#2son has re-dubbed this “Elvish bread” –remember the bread that Frodo and Sam were given as “baon”(provision) for their mission to Mt.Doom? (J.R.R. Tolkien’s works)
my boy says one bite could fill his tummy and keep him feeling full all day. this was his lunch today, filled with chunky peanut butter, and he’s too full to accept an after-school snack :)

the recipe makes two loaves. after i tucked it in to rise, the dough went up so quickly that i got a bit alarmed that it might spill out into the counter. i could see it growing right before my eyes. i think it must have been the wheat gluten–it must have contributed to the soft fluffiness of its texture. ahh, the sweet, delightful mysteries of bread-making. someday i’ll study the science of it.

the recipe, follows…

honey oatmeal bread

4 & 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tbsps. active dry yeast
2 cups milk
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp. salt
1/2 cup Scottish oatmeal
2 tbsps. vital wheat gluten

in a large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups of the flour and the yeast.
in a sauce pan heat milk, honey, oil, and salt just until warm (115°F).
add to dry mixture in mixing bowl. beat at low speed with electric mixer for 1/2 minute, scraping sides constantly.
beat 3 minutes on high speed.
by hand, stir in oats, wheat gluten, and enough of the remaining flour to make a stiff dough.
turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (8-10 minutes).
shape into a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to to grease surface.
cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 45 minutes).
punch dough down; turn out onto slightly floured surface.
divide in half.
cover and let rest 10 minutes
shape into 2 loaves; place in two greased bread pans (8 1/2″ by 4 1/2″ by 2 & 1/2″).
slash the tops with a very sharp thin knife, if you like.
cover and let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk (about 30 minutes).
for a brown top, butter lightly before baking.

bake in preheated oven at 375°F for 35-40 minutes.
remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.
(from Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods.)