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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Anti-recipe #29 - soaked grain bread

I am an absentee blogger I know.

I have been absentee housekeeper too.

I realize though that the lazy period for newly pregnant mamas decreases in direct proportion to the number of children one has.

With my first pregnancy I was lazy for a good 4-5 months. Seriously. I barely cooked or cleaned, just the absolute minimum. I was also unemployed and depressed. A dark period for me. I watched a lot of Lifetime Television movies. (Ah, those were the days of unfettered television watching while consuming a whole bag of Doritos. HA.)

With my second little man was still napping daily. I slept with him every single day for the first several months, for at least half an hour, then I would get up and read or laze around. But otherwise I was crazy busy, as mamas chasing toddlers are.

With the third. Well. I think I have taken three naps since the blessed event. I have been lazy for a good three or four weeks now and I feel my window closing. No longer can I be lazy, tired mommy who kicks toys under the couch instead of putting them away. No longer can I answer "I am hungry" with "go get yourself a yogurt." I need to sweep. I should probably mop too. And my bathroom smells. I definitely need to cook more often.

Poor dada. He is truly a saint, cooking and cleaning when he comes home so I can lie on the couch with my eyes closed. The first trimester fatigue is really really the pits.

Anyway. I think I am done with it. Or. Rather. I think I have to be done.

Here was my effort recently to overcome this: baking soaked grain bread.

The recipe is from this blog. I pretty much follow it, but, with some tweaks. I always soak in kefir, overnight. Soaking your flour gives you a fluffier bread and more importantly breaks down the hard-to-digest parts of the grain. (There is more info on why to soak on the above link.)

I also used, this time, an unbleached white flour with “ultragrain” flour mixed in – apparently slightly processed wheat flour with the nutrients of wheat flour but the lighter texture like white. (I was out of wheat)
little miss helping.

Good stuff.

Seriously, it made the best bread.

And okay, so I know the whole gluten free thing. But I am pregnant. I want bread. I want crackers. I want noodles. So far I seem okay with it, like I have said before my body just works better pregnant, but I hope to cut down again once the first trimester ickies are done with. Also, its for the kiddies.

Here goes.

11 cups unbleached/Ultragrain flour (or some combination of wheat and white. Just wheat flour will give you a really dense hard loaf – eh. Not so tasty)

2 cups oats

5 cups warm water (the other recipe only uses 2 ½? It totally needed more moisture IMO.)

¾ cups coconut oil or melted butter (I used butter, we were out of oil, but I usually use coconut oil)

1 cup kefir

¾ cup honey (you can use more honey if you like)

Mix the above thoroughly in a large bowl, cover with Saran wrap, pressing firmly into the dough, otherwise you will have crunchy parts in the morning, ew. Let it stand in a warm place (on the top of your gas range stove) over night.

2 ½ TB yeast

1 tsp honey

½ cup warm water

1tsp Salt

In the morning mix up the above yeast, honey and warm water and let it stand for five minutes or so, until it gets bubbly and the yeast has dissolved. Add to the flour mixture, along with the salt.

Knead this all really well for ten minutes. It feels like a really long time. It is a really long time. But you can do it. You have to get the dough to the point where it is elastic-y and stretchy.

I gave baby dear a chunk of her own and she went to town. So cute.

You will need to be throwing handfuls of flour in as you do this, so be ready.

look at the rise on this bread!

After ten minutes set the dough in a buttered bowl (it makes it easier to get out) and let it rise for a good 1 ½, until it has roughly doubled in size. I let mine sit on top of my oven, set to 100, necessary for a good rise in the chilly frozen tundra.

Punch it down and let it rise again, for 45 minutes. (I skipped this step, you totally can, and the bread turned out great.)

Butter your 4 loaf pans and preheat your over to 350.

Divide into four loaf pieces, fold over into thirds, with the seam at the bottom of the pan, and pat down with the back of your hand. It sounds weird but it makes for a more even rise. Let your loaves rise now, for maybe 30 minutes, on top of your preheating oven.

Now, bake for 30 minutes or so. Here is the trick, you want to take it out before it is too brown on the top. The key to knowing when its done? Pull your pans out and tap on the bottom of the pan with your knuckles or fingernail (so as to not burn yourself) the tap should sound hollow.

Now your bread is done. Don’t let it cool in the pan! It’ll get mushy. Take it out and let it sit on a wire rack. Once its fully cool you can store it in old bread bags in the fridge. You can also freeze it for up to a month or two. Just let it thaw on the counter and throw back in the oven if you want to pretend you just baked it.


Strawberry jam.



  1. wow that looks so good. i might have to overcome my fear of baking just to make this recipe.


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