The Fresh Loaf

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Need to find a very yummy, but simple enough to make Whole grain bread with seeds

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berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Need to find a very yummy, but simple enough to make Whole grain bread with seeds

Well, the last month I've started to get my health under control. I had through the roof high blood pressure (and didn't know it) and had a very under active thryoid and seems my blood sugars are high too (though how much of problem this will be is still unknown as they get my thyroid back in normal ranges).


So, I'm trying to get my act together. I'm only 41 years old (just turned last month while all this was happening) and I don't want to be take insulin. Problem is, I don't like most 100% whole grain breads. I've tried some artisan breads that are 100% whole grain I love, but I can't duplicate it at home! then, I learn that most commercial whole wheat breads aren't very good on the glycemic index either (too much like white). So, I need suggestions for recipes/books to find EASY TO DO tasty whole grain breads. I'm not into wild yeast or those lengthy starters yet. other options?


 


Melissa

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

So sorry about all your medical problems. At least, it seems, you now have diagnoses to treat.


I don't have a ton of experience with whole grain baking compared to some, but Peter Reinhart's "Whole Grain Breads" is very accessible. It takes some additional work to coax the very best flavor from whole grains, but this is not difficult. It just takes planning.


What you make will be influenced by your personal taste and your family's, but there are delicious whole wheat and whole rye breads that bear little resemblance to what you find in the grocery.


See my most recent blog entry on the 100% WW Bread from WGB. It's delcious.


Best wishes for your health and happy baking!


David

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Thanks David. While I've always been overweight, I've always eaten well (I make all our meals and we eat healthy. Of our family of 5, I'm the only one overweight). I had continual headaches for 3 months and went in to find I had 230/130 BP. That is all under control now, but the thyroid was way underactive and all thyroid tests were abnormal, but fortunately no nodule. That is getting there - now it's at 15 (was at 43) and needs to come down to below 3. But, the blood sugars are getting worse. Was 143 the first test and 209 the second test (4 weeks apart - over the holidays). I basically have 3 months to get my act together with blood sugar before they start me on insulin. In 6 weeks they will test my thyroid again with an increased dose and hopefully that will fix that.


So, I need to find some low glycemic carbs. I can't eliminate bread from my diet completely.


 


I think I have Reinhart's WHole Grain breads, but aren't all the recipes with starter? I just don't feel I can commit to maintaining a starter. I'm juggling so many other things as it is.


 


Melissa

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hi, Melissa.


Many of the breads in WGB can be made with sourdough starter, but the basic recipes call for yeasted bigas. These are just mixed - flour, liquid and yeast - the night before mixing the final dough. A soaker is often used also. There is nothing to "maintain" with these breads.


As I said, the amount of work involved is not great. You just have to decide before hand what you want to bake the next day. I bet you can handle it.


David

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Oh that I can do - I do that with one of my favorite breads all the time. OK, after breakfast I'll look up recipes in that book.


 


Melisa

SCruz's picture
SCruz

There is no easier bread than no-knead bread. It takes no skill or experience. The one thing that will make a big difference is having a dutch oven or a tall pyrex casserole with a lid. If you don't have that you can make a tent out of tin foil and bake in in a pie plate. The bread is terrific.


There are many articles about it on TFL, it started with a baker named Jim Lahey at the Sullivan Bakery and was picked up by Mark Bittman from the NY Times. There's an article about it in the Nov 2006 NY TImes. There are threads about it on TFL and elsewhere. It is delicious.


I make mine 50:50 whole wheat to white unbleached, but it can be made 100% WW.


Mix together 3 C (15.5 oz if you have a scale) of WW flour, 1 1/2 C water, 1/4 t instant yeast, and 1 1/2 t salt. All you have to do is stir them together until everything is mixed. I add 1/4 C poppy seeds and 1/2 C sunflower seeds, but that's optional.


Let it sit in a bowl covered for 15-18 hours. Turn it out onto a floured surface, stretch the dough out, fold it over itself, form it into a loaf, put flour or parchment paper on the bottom of the dutch oven, plop the dough in, cover it, and let it rise 1 1/2 - 2 hours. 


Half an hour before baking preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Put the bread in, lower the temperature to 450. Bake it for 25 minutes covered, uncover and bake another 10-20 minutes. When it's rich golden brown it's ready.


 


 

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

One of these days I will try a no knead bread, but the kneading part isn't my issue. I can do it by machine (I have a good one) or by hand. It's just that I'm not ready for building a starter and maintaining it. Maybe soon, but not yet.


 


Melissa

Marni's picture
Marni

Are you looking for crusty artisan breads or softer sandwich types? 


You could try switching the flour in an already favorite bread to white whole wheat as a start.  You'll probably have to alter the hydration.  (add water!)


The Bread Bible has a simple technique of letting part of the flour water and yeast sit for just an hour or so before continuing with the recipe. ( A modified poolish?) It enhances the flavor, and will soften whole grains too.   You might want to check it out.


I know you're not ready for sourdough yet, but I have read that it is lower on the glycemic index, if so (I'd check it out first) you can add that in later.  It's not as complicated as you might think.


Sorry you to have to deal with this, glad you're on your way to getting it under control.


Marni


 

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Hmmm... seems sourdoughs are lower glycemic (why I don't know), but maybe I can find/make a white whole wheat sourdough taht I can live with. Of course, I don't know what my trigger foods are. When I was pregnant with my youngest son I developed gestational diabetes and any and all breads sent my numbers up. Only potatoes kept them low enough. But, I never made homemade at the time and not sourdough either.

SCruz's picture
SCruz

Melissa:


With no-knead bread there is no starter, no maintenance. You mix four ingredients in the afternoon, and bake it the next morning. If you want tasty WW bread, this is a fine, easy sollution.

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Hi Melissa,


Sorry to hear about your health problems but glad that you got a diagnosis and can start to get things under control.


If you can do a simple yeast mix the night before, as suggested to David - simply stir it up, leave it - you could try the lemon wholewheat bread on the link below. I find it yummy so hopefully it qualifies on that count!


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/19216/sourdough-wholemeal-lemon-bread-adaptation-jan-hedh-formula


The formula was for yeast originally. Just put 10g of instant dry yeast for the first 30g of sourdough and 15g instant dry yeast for the second 45g of sourdough.


Mixes are short and because you do the yeast mix the night before, proofing times in a warm room (from 60 mins. and 90mins.), are actually shorter than a some straight doughs. This is a firm dough too, so not sloppy to mix or transfer to the oven, which also makes thing easier.


Amount is for a small batch and it freezes well. It can be made as either bread or rolls of a mixture of the two. You can vary the lemon zest according to taste. 


There is a small amount of durum wheat in the first mix. Don't worry about this if you don't have it to hand. You could try 150g AP or Bread Flour. At only 10% of total dough it shouldn't spike your glycaemic index. Alternatively you could try it with all wholemeal and rye. Will have closer crumb but should still taste yummy! 


Wishing you happy wholemeal baking whichever formula you choose,


With best wishes, Daisy_A
SarahJane's picture
SarahJane

There are 2 books on the market that I'm in love with for fast, easy bread.  The first is Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day, but the one you should check out is it's whole grain sister, Healthy Bread in 5 Minutes a Day.  Both books are by Hertzberg and Francois.  They are no knead, but also no starter dough is used.  Not even a biga.  There are lots of different recipes with all kinds of whole grains and seeds.  I've had very good luck with this method and it is so easy for a busy mom (like myself) who wants to have healthy, homemade bread available for my family, but doesn't always have the time to spend making a biga or punching dough down every few hours.  Good luck!

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Thanks! Yes, that's me too. I have two kids (5 and 14) and between them, my mother in law who lives with us and cooking and cleaning and now working out and wanting to spend SOME time with my husband , I don't want to add another 'chore' to my list. It's hard enough for me to keep ANY homemade bread in the house. (We go through 5-6 loaves a week).

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Of course any bread has to fit into the bread baker's schedule! 


However some recent research has suggested that long fermentation is one of the key things that makes bread more digestible and less likely to raise the eater's glycaemic index. 


The lactic acid produced by sourdough is said to reduce the insulin hit. However longer fermentation even with yeast (as in a biga), also has potential to 'predigest' the flour, making it easier to digest when eaten. 


In some cases that has more impact than changing from white to whole meal grains.


Healthy Bread in 5 that is left to ferment is more likely deliver the low glycaemic benefit but the Healthy in 5 bread mixed and fermented for only 2 hours on the bench is far less likely to do this, even if it is wholemeal and contains seeds. 


These results are reported in brief on this organic bread site, but the author is drawing on wider research. 


http://www.harrygow.co.uk/organic/index.htm


I guess it's always a balance between time and benefits! However long fermentation doesn't always mean lots of wearing hands on time.  There are long fermentation recipes where the whole dough can be mixed and then just left overnight before baking. Time spent nursing such doughs are very short! However, they are doing the pre-digesting thing, which should help. 


With best wishes, Daisy_A

SarahJane's picture
SarahJane

Daisy! Thank you for that link and the info on long fermentation!  That is fascinating information!  So, if I'm understanding correctly, the 5 minutes a day method works, but if you want the full benefits as your link talks about, you have to use the dough after it has sat and fermented.  So the recipes from the 5 minute books say to use the dough within 14 days.  The most healthy bread is the bread that is being made at the end of that period.  Thanks again for that information!