Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Irish Oatmeal Bread

I think I work better with one loaf at a time. I decided to halve the recipe because I only have one loaf pan and am starting to have a collection of bread in my freezer, but also because maybe it is easier to mix, knead, etc. This recipe is adapted from the All-New-Complete-Cooking-Light-Cookboook, which is a standard go-to recipe book of mine. I use it all the time for baking when I'm trying to lighten things up, but I've never made any of their yeast breads before. (I'll have to do a post soon about the banana bread from this book. It is hands down the moistest, yummiest, and totally fail-proof banana bread.) Anyways, this turned out quite well. I checked the temp of the water before adding it to the yeast with a probe thermometer and I also let the bread rise in a warm oven since my apartment is a little chilly. (Julia Child says to turn the oven on and off to maintain a temp between 80 and 100 degrees.)

Irish Oatmeal Bread

1 1/8 c boiling water
7/8 c steel-cut oats
1 1/2 t salt
1 1/2 T canola oil
1 T molasses
1/8 t sugar
1 packages active dry yeast (about 2 1/4 t)
1/4 c warm water (100° to 110°)
1 1/2 c all-purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 c whole wheat flour

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large bowl, and let stand 25 minutes.
Dissolve sugar and yeast in warm water; let stand 5 minutes or until foamy.

Foamy yeast!

Add to oat mix. Gradually add 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour and the whole wheat flour to the oat mix. Stir with wooden soon until well blended.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add remaining all-purpose flour as needed, 1 T at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel sticky).

Place dough in a large bowl coated with oil. Turn to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hr.

Punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Roll into a 14 x 8-inch rectangle on a floured surface. Roll up rectangle, starting with a short edge and pinch seam and ends to seal. Put loaf, seam sides down, in a 9-inch lightly oiled loaf pan. Cover and let rise again, 30 minutes or until doubled in size.

Bake at 350ยบ for 45 minutes or until loaf is browned and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pan, and cool on a wire rack.

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