LTS Whole Grain Bread with Barley Flour

LTS Whole Grain Bread with Barley Flour

LTS Whole Grain Bread with Barley Flour

Good, heavy, dense bread for open face sandwiches and fancy toast.

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 1/2 cups warm water

2 tablespoons honey

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 cups barley flour

2 to 4 cups whole wheat flour, divided

1 tablespoon shortening,, melted (butter is better flavor, if it’s on hand)

In a small bowl, dissolve the active dry yeast in the warm water and set aside for 10 to 15 minutes, or until foamy. Stir in the honey and salt until incorporated. Using a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the barley flour, 2 cups of the whole wheat flour, yeast mixture, and the butter for 5 to 6 minutes on medium slow, or until all the flour is incorporated. Remove the dough from the mixer and put it on a well-floured (with whole wheat flour) work surface. Knead for 5 to 8 minutes, until the dough is elastic and smooth. Add as much whole wheat flour as necessary, but don’t incorporate more than another 2 cups here. The dough will be tacky to the touch. Place the dough in a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a damp dish towel, and set in a warm spot until it doubles in size, usually about 2 to 4 hours. Punch down the dough and place it in a loaf pan (approximately 9 inches by 5 inches). Cover with plastic wrap or a damp dish towel and let the dough rise a second time, until it hits the top of the pan, usually another 1 to 2 hours. (If you do not have a loaf pan, free-form a batard-shaped loaf, put it on a sheet pan, and cover as directed.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the loaf pan on the center rack and bake for about 40 to 50 minutes, or until the bread browns lightly. The loaf should fall easily from the pan when tapped and sound hollow when you knock on the bottom. Cool slightly before serving.  PANTRY NOTE: When possible, store baked whole grain bread in a plastic bag in your fridge, where it will keep for about two weeks. If the bread turns stale, slice it thin and bake for 7 to 10 minutes at 350 degrees for a crispy homemade crostini. You can also store baked bread in a plastic bag in the freezer, where it will keep for two to three months.

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