The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Help needed for whole wheat bread.

LaurenO's picture

Help needed for whole wheat bread.

I am looking for a great whole wheat honey bread recipe that will make 2 loafs in my 10 inch pans.  I have tried many recipes to get the right one but all have dissappointed.  None have been able to fill the pan properly and have not been very pretty.  They taste good but they are flat.  Please help!!

gardenchef's picture

I've been trying to get family to like whole wheat for years. I've been adjusting a country white bread recipe and have finalized on a a good recipe but it's not complete whole wheat, it's lighter. Uses 3 1/2C white and 2 1/2C whole wheat. Let me know if you would like it.

` cathy

LaurenO's picture

I'm looking for a recipe that is mainly WW.  That's what my family likes. Thanks for your reply.

ilovetodig's picture

There was a recipe for buttermilk whole-wheat bread in the last day or two.  Type that in search and you will come up with several that may be what you are looking for.

LaurenO's picture

Thanks. I'll try that next.

dmsnyder's picture

Reinhart's books have a recipe for a 100% whole wheat bread. It has evolved some over the years. The one I've liked best is in BBA. It is delicious.


LLM777's picture

Yes, I do agree that PR has the best method for whole grain bread, just a little time consuming. Obviously, well worth it though. 

I especially like the Master Formula in his Whole Grain Bread book myself. The most awesome flavor and texture I've ever had in whole grain. 

But Floyd's is the one I use if I didn't plan ahead and don't mind a little white flour. :)

LLM777's picture

I just made the honey whole wheat bread by Floyd yesterday and it was great. I made it with freshly ground spelt and needed a little extra water and it turned out beautiful and delicious! 

Search "honey whole wheat" and it'll turn up "by Floyd May 2006"

I used stretch and fold at 30 minutes each for a total of 90 minutes for first rise instead of just letting it rise on it's own.


Edith Pilaf's picture
Edith Pilaf

... it's the best I've tasted, so far:

In fact, it's so good, I haven't felt the need to try too many other recipes.  I really like the overnight pre-ferment as it makes such a tender, high-rising loaf.  I didn't even like whole wheat until I tried this.  And it makes the best toast.  This recipe makes 2 9x5, 1 3/4 lb loaves for me.  It should be an easy thing to increase the amount to fill your 10" pans.

SimplyDenise's picture

Have  you found that folding compare to allowing the bread to rise on its own has made that much of a difference?

I was reading "Bread" by JP and he really endorses it but I wanted to hear if others had tried it.


davidg618's picture

Most of the breads I bake with gluten-forming flours and hydrations ranging from 68% to 80% are prepared with Stretch and Fold. For the lower hydrations as little as 2 or 3 S & F's are sufficient. For high hydrations I've done more than a dozen. Whatever the hydration the doughs all exhibit the same behavior: extraordinary extensibility, and at some point--maybe the second, maybe the twentieth S&F--the dough suddenly becomes both "formed" and "satiny smooth". Honest, you can see it and feel it, although it's more subtle in the high hydration doughs.

For the most part, I've entirely abondoned both manual, and machine kneading.

My typical mixing profile, regardless of hydration: Mix Flour and water to "shaggy mess stage", about 2-3 minutes on lowest speed on a Kitchenaid stand mixer with beater blade; 30 minute autolyse; add salt (and yeast if used); knead lowest speed 1-2 minutes, for lower hydration doughs, e.g. 68 percent, 5-7 minutes high hydration doughs, e.g., 72%-80%. Stretch and fold 2-3 times at 45 minute intervals for low hydration doughs, 20-30 minute intervals for high hydration doughs. Stop S & F's when the dough "feels" able to hold the expected shape: tight for low hydration, loose for high hydration.

I know that "feely" business is imprecise. Nonetheless, that's what I do.

David G.

P.S. I'm still learning the disciplines needed for 100% whole wheat and 100% rye doughs.  From what I've experienced, so far, none of the above applies, especially for rye flour doughs.


Caltrain's picture

12?! How much time do you let the dough rest in between?

davidg618's picture

I let the dough rest as much as thirty minutes, or as little as ten. I also may do 3 or 4 S&F's each time. With 68% hydration doughs (our weekly sourdough) I only do one S&F after each rest.

SimplyDenise's picture

Wow, and Thank you is all I can say!!

I couldn't believe the volume I was able to get out of my breads with folding only twice during the rising stage. I wouldn't have believed it possible if I didnt see it for myself.

Thank you so much for the encouragement and words of wisdom. I'm really looking forward to what lies ahead with learning from this forum, sure is a great place to learn a whole lot.!!


LLM777's picture

I was frustrated with regular rise until I started doing the stretch and fold method. There is so much more volume you get with this simple technique. I tend to use higher hydration with my whole grains and with the stretch and fold it gives "form" to my slack dough.

It also seems to improve my surface tension which has been a problem for me in the past.


davidg618's picture

My wife bakes our daily bread, I do the weekly sourdoughs. Here is her recipe.

1-3/4 cups low-fat buttermilk

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons sunflower or canola oil (what we use)

4-1/4 cups bread flour (we use KA)

1-3/4 cups whole-wheat flour (ditto)

2 tsp salt

2 tsp instant dry yeast

My wife, Yvonne, regularly makes this bread in our bread machine on the "Dough Cycle", but there is no reason it can't be made manually. The recipe yields three, 1-lb loaves. Yvonne bulk proofs it for 2 to 2-1/2 hours (room temp is about 70°F), shapes into three loaves (8-1/2 in x 4-1/2 x 2-3/4 pans) and final proofs for another 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Bakes them in our regular oven, at 350°F; 25 minutes.  For your 10" pans this shold make a generous 2 loaves; baking time estimated 30 to 35 minutes.

The thing we think makes this bread (and its all-white variant) so flavorful is the long proof times.

David G

SimplyDenise's picture

Thanks everyone for your input. I definitely am trying it this week and my going to report back to you next week.

with all your comments, sounds like I'm in for a pleasant surprise!!!