Note: If you do not have powdered milk, you can heat 2 cups of milk, or 1 cup milk & 1 cup water; whichever you prefer, in a small saucepan to 120 degrees on a candy thermometer and omit the 2 cups of water. Also, when making 100% whole wheat bread, you may have to adjust the amount of wheat flour if the weather is too humid or dry. Adding to much wheat flour can make the bread dry. If you do not like the strong flavor of 100% wheat bread then you can replace some of the flour with bread flour and it will be lighter in texture, but I prefer the 100% flavor of whole wheat bread.
Grease a large mixing bowl and set aside. In another large mixing bowl, add the yeast, salt, sugar or honey, oil, and hot water. With a mixer, mix all those ingredients for 2 minutes. Add 2 cups of wheat flour and the powdered milk. Mix for another 2 minutes. With a wooden spoon, stir in the 3 cups of whole wheat flour. Remove the dough from the bowl out onto a lightly floured counter top or table. Knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. You may need to sprinkle a little flour on your dough or counter top a couple of times if it is too sticky, but not too much. Take dough and place it in the greased bowl; flip the dough over so greased side is up. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap; don’t tighten it down, just lay it over the bowl loosely….or you can use a small t-towel too. The plastic helps it from drying out to much. Let it rise until double in a warm place. Like; a sunny window or on a warm clothes dryer that is running. It can rise as quickly as 45 minutes in those warm places. Otherwise, it can take up to 1 hour to 1 ½ hours depending on the temperature in your house. To test to see if the dough has doubled, press the dough on the top with the tips of your two fingers, lightly and quickly about 1/2 inch into the dough. If the impression stays, the dough is doubled and is ready. If the indent disappears quickly, it needs a little more time; cover and let rise a bit longer. ( 100% wheat bread does not get the height like white bread does).
Lightly grease a cookie sheet with shortening, or you can line with parchment paper. After the dough has risen, dump the dough from the bowl onto a clean table or counter. Pull about 14 pieces of dough off the dough, and shape them into balls by tucking the ends under…kind of like pinching it all towards the center on the underside of the roll. Place shaped rolls onto the greased cookie sheet(s) about 2 inches apart. Cover with towel; let rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake 1 cookie sheet at a time, and bake for 25-30 minutes. They should be golden brown on top. Remove from oven. Take a wet paper towel, and it can be really good and wet, and wipe off the tops of the baked rolls. This does not make your bread soggy. (trust me! ) It keeps the bread crust soft! But…You can avoid this step if you want. Remove rolls from cookie sheet to racks to cool. Wait at least 5 minutes (if you can) before splitting a roll open and smearing it with butter before eating. This gives the bread a few minutes to set. If there is any left over, cool the rolls completely, and store in a airtight container or put into freezer bags and freeze for future eating. You can then microwave 1 frozen roll for 30 seconds when you are ready for another taste of homemade bread.
To bake bread in a loaf pan: You can use 2 loaf pans, your choice, but since the 100% whole wheat bread is denser and slightly heavier than white, it does not rise as high in a loaf pan as white bread. So I bake it in a single loaf pan to get a nice looking loaf of bread.
Ok,that being said….Same ingredients, same procedure. Except, after the first rising, remove dough from bowl and flatten it into a greased loaf pan for the final rising. Cover with a towel and let it rise for about 45 minutes in a warm place. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (bake in a hotter oven than for the rolls) Bake for about 40-50 minutes. Remove from oven. Wipe down bread with a wet paper towel. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack. And….if you insist on cutting a slice of bread before it is cool, use a electric knife or a large serrated bread knife so the loaf don’t get squashed down when you are cutting it. :o).