This is a recipe based on a few different bread recipes that use fresh milled grain. It is completely whole grain and is just heady and delicious! It took a few tries with different recipes, different types of rises, etc. before I finally came up with one that worked. This takes some planning. You won't get a loaf in 4 hours, but you will get a wonderful, completely clean, bread that will impress the neighbors and make you feel awesome. Preparation time includes the soaking time.
- Grind about 5 cups of hard red or hard white spring wheat. I use my 49 year old Vitamix and run it through a sieve to get out the cracked parts.
- Tip for using Vitamix--store grain in freezer so it does not get hot during grinding. Do only 1 cup at a time. You can re-grind the larger pieces.
- Measure it out on a scale because the weight of flour is different depending on the grind. This is key. It will be around 5 cups, but you won't get bread that is as good if you use volume over weight.
- In your bread machine, add everything EXCEPT yeast and about 1 cup of flour.
- Turn on your bread machine and let it mix. It'll be kind of gloopy, that's fine. You might need to help get all the wheat wet by mixing it inches It doesn't have to be perfect, but we want the wheat wet. Stop once it's mixed (turn off machine). Of course you can do that by hand if you want to.
- Set the timer on your bread machine for at least 8 hours later and use the dough cycle for the best bread. You can wait up to 24 hours.
- The wait is so that the whole wheat can do a few important things; develop a good gluten and break down phytic acids. By using buttermilk (you can make your own or use water and 2 tsp apple cider vinegar) you give it an acidic environment to do it's thing.
- Pour the remaining flour on top of the dough and make a little "bowl" in the flour and carefully pour the yeast into the indent so that it is separated from the dough. If you don't, it will activate too early. Even better if you have a bread machine with a separate yeast chamber. If so you do not need to hold back any flour.
- When the machine beeps the next morning, the dough should be nicely risen, although you might expect it to be a bit higher if you're used to using regular bread flour. Worry not, my friend.
- Wash your counter very well and spray a little oil on it. Oil up your hands and turn the dough onto the counter. Fold it over itself a few times and then tear the dough in half. Just using your hands make it into a rectangle and roll it up tightly. Place it into an oiled bread pan. Cover with a towel and allow to rise for another hour or so. I just turn on my oven for a bit at low heat and then turn it off.
- Take the towel out of the oven (very important part) and bake for 25-30 minutes at 350.