The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Health Breads

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Jokat's picture
Jokat

Health Breads

Hi all,

I am a keen wanna be baker and bodybuilder. Because of my sport and lifestyle of choice I watch what I eat with a fair amount of diligence. I enjoy eating as naturally and healthily as possible.

That said, are there any like minded individuals here with some excellent healthy bread ideas. I love bread but it is not very bodybuilding diet friendly unless it is low gi and extra healthy.

Any suggestions would be great, I am dying to get back into the kitchen and make some really nice healthy breads.

Kind Regards,

Jokat

sphealey's picture
sphealey

The Laurel's Kitchen cookbooks, including both the 1st and 2nd edition of Laurel's Kitchen and The Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book have extensive discussions of what healthy bread is, how it fits into a balanced diet (vegetarian in their case, but the theory applies to any diet {in the larger sense of "diet", not the restrictive sense}), and how to make it. The first edition of the cookbook, published during the 1970s, is the most extreme to the health side, but all three are very good in these areas.
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Except - you have to be willing to give up many of the preconceptions which have been drilled into Americans since the 1940s about how bread is "bad for you" or "fattening" in order to make use of the information in these books (I think most Europeans never fell for this to the extent that Americans did). There is an enormous mythology of false information about the nutrition of bread that is so deeply ingrained (ha ha) in American popular culture that it can be literally impossible to help people see around it.
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sPh

naschol's picture
naschol

Jokat,

To get the low GI, you want to stay away from refined flours, fats and sugars and add some "chunks" to your bread. I found an excellent recipe on the King Arthur website (http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/getrecipe.php?id=1147097845500) that rises high and is also very healthy. It uses 100% whole wheat for the flour, olive oil for the fat, and honey, molasses or maple syrup for the sweetener. You also have "chunk" in the form of sunflower seeds and walnuts. I made it with sunflower seeds and soaked flax seeds and cracked wheat. You can vary those ingredients, but be sure not to go over the 1/2 cup total or it may affect the rise of the bread. Make sure to soak flax seed, cracked wheat, bulgur or any hard grain type overnight, if you use any of them. Oatmeal is also a good healthy additive.

If you want to go REALLY, REALLY healthy, you will just have to get yourself a grain mill and grind your own kamut or spelt to use in place of the flour... :-)

Nancy

helend's picture
helend

Spelt is very good and fairly easily available ready ground as a wholemeal flour. It is excellent for baking bread with but don't over knead it - the gluten strands are fragile compared to ordinary wheat.

Jokat's picture
Jokat

Excellent suggestions everyone,

Thank you... I made a basic whole wheat loaf tonight and it was good but I did use some white flour which is not ideal for my needs. Will give the King Arthur recipe a go this weekend.

Kind Regards,

Jokat