How to bake whole-wheat bread
Want to try your hand at baking bread? Use these easy step-by-step instructions for making the perfect loaf
The recipe that follows makes one loaf (1 lb., 14 oz.) and takes 3 hours, plus 4 hours to stand and cool. You'll need:
For the soaker
- 5 tsp. coarse whole-grain polenta or corn grits*
- 3 tbsp. bulgur wheat
For the dough
- About 3 1/2 cups whole-wheat bread flour such as hard red, hard white, or Red Fife
- 1 3/4 tsp. instant yeast such as RapidRise
- 1 3/4 tsp. fine sea salt
- About 2 tbsp. olive oil or grapeseed oil
- 1 tsp. melted butter
If kneading by hand: Transfer to a lightly floured work surface and knead with damp hands, adding only a light coating of flour and wetting hands as required to prevent sticking, until dough is smooth, soft, and stretchy (it should still feel tacky), 12 to 15 minutes.
Let bread cool in pan on a rack about 10 minutes, then loosen from pan (if it sticks, cool in pan another 5 minutes). Cool at least 1 hour on rack.
Full written recipe: True Whole-Wheat Bread