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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Whole Grain Bread

This is a challenge for me to put this recipe into this format. Usually I do the first half of this recipe by measure and look/feel, and the second half by feel alone. I am going to refer you to my first post on this blog to read. It gives a description of my bread making process and some pointers I will not use in this post. Many of the bread making tips can be used for making rolls or bread or any type of yeast bread.  Here is the link:
If you have any questions while making this please feel free to ask. As I said I go mostly by feel with this since I do it all by hand. I do have a bread mixer but I only use if for meringues, creams, and quick breads. I like to feel my yeast bread to know when it is right. Good Luck with this. Don't give up if you don't succeed on the first try. I have been making bread for about 25 years since I was about 6-7 years old. Here it goes.

First for all of my baked goods I use a mixed flour. I mix 2 cups of whole wheat flour with 1 cup whole oat flour. This makes the bread much lighter and fluffier. I also use instant yeast because I don't have to let it soak to soften. This is still the same thing as other yeast just ground a little finer. Another benefit of this is mixed in the flour the water you add can be a little warmer than if you need to soften it. If you don't have instant yeast just reduce the water temp to 110-120 and mix 1/2 c water with the yeast and 1 T of the honey. I replace the oil with either cooked and mashed sweet potatoes, yams, or mashed bananas, or applesauce, really just what is convenient. I know many people are salt intolerant up to 50% of the people in the US, but I like the taste of it in the bread. If you are salt intolerant feel free to replace the salt with something else. I also sometimes will add 1-2 t of cinnamon, you can barely taste is but it does change the flavor a bit, I usually add this when I am using yams or sweet potatoes. Sponging the initial mixture gives the dough a fantastic texture.

9-12 c Whole Grain Flour
2 T Instant Yeast
2 T Honey
1 c of Veggie or Fruit
3 c of Warm water (120-135 deg)
1-2 T Salt
1/2 c Powdered Milk
2 c Ice Cubes

Mix 5 cups of flour with the yeast and powdered milk. Add the honey, fruit or veggie, and water, mix well. The mixture should be loose at this point, just a little thicker than pancake batter. Cover and let this mixture sponge for 15-30 minutes in a warm room. When the sponging is complete it should have risen  about double. Add the salt and 2 cups of flour. Begin mixing. When the mixture begins holding together well enough turn the dough out on a floured counter and begin kneading. I usually knead my bread for 20 - 30 minutes. When you are done kneading the dough place your large mixing bowl over the dough and let it rise for 15 minutes. While the dough is rising preheat your oven to 425.  On the lower shelf of the oven place your oldest worst cookie sheet or a couple pie pans. After the dough has risen shape it into 4 loaves. Place in your bread pans and let rise till a little more than double. When the dough has risen place the bread in the oven on the top shelf in about the middle of the oven. On the baking sheet on the bottom shelf pour the ice cubes. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 and continue baking 30 - 45 more minutes until done. Test doneness with a spoon. Tap the top of the loaf with the back of the spoon. If it sounds hollow and the loaves are golden brown remove and butter the tops. Remove the loaves from the pans and cool on their side on a rack. Wrap them in plastic when they are cool. These loaves are best the next day as the crust will soften over night. Good Luck.

Nutrition Facts I split each loaf into 12 slice for a total of 48 servings. These facts are calculated using unsweetened applesauce.

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 104.6
  Total Fat 1.0 g
      Saturated Fat 0.4 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.2 g
  Cholesterol 1.3 mg
  Sodium 296.9 mg
  Potassium 119.9 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 21.6 g
      Dietary Fiber 3.5 g
      Sugars 1.5 g
  Protein 4.1 g Nutrition facts calculated on

Valentines Day Chicken Cordon Blue

2 Chicken Breasts boneless skinless
2 slices Ham extra lean 5 % fat
1/4 c Italian Flavored Bread Crumbs
2 T Whole Wheat Flour (divided)
1 Egg
1 oz Blue Cheese (crumbled)
1 oz Mozzarella Cheese (shredded)
1 c Nonfat Milk
2 T Fresh Chives chopped

     Trim the Chicken breasts to medallions by cutting approximately 1/3 of the chicken breast off of the pointed side of the breast. Cut a slit in the side of the chicken breast.  Take the ham and cut in half.  In a bowl mix the cheese and honey mustard. Make a "sandwich" with 2 pieces of ham and half of each of the cheese mixture. Stuff these sandwiches in the slit in the chicken breast. Use a toothpick to keep the chicken breast shut. If you have a difficult time with the "sandwich" ham you can chop up the ham and mix it with the cheese and stuff this mix in the chicken. In a separate bowl mix the bread crumbs and flour, season with salt and pepper to taste. In another bowl slightly whisk the egg. Dredge the chicken breasts in egg first then in bread crumbs. Place the breasts on a baking sheet. Bake for 35 - 45 minutes @ 350 deg. With a meat thermometer ensure the chicken breast reaches 165 deg. While these are cooking place the trimmed pieces of chicken breast in a frying pan season with salt and pepper while cooking. When this is half cooked add the milk to the pan. Cook until the chicken is done and remove the chicken from the milk. I usually add some chicken flavor "better than bullion" to my gravy. Add the remaining flour and thicken over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Add more flour to thicken as needed. When the chicken is done serve the gravy over the chicken and garnish with fresh chives. Enjoy:)

 2 Servings

P.S.  I made this using Smoked Gouda from Arla Dofino in the little waxed rounds. I replaced the mozzarella cheese and what a difference this made. I also used a single piece of thick sliced Canadian Bacon. The gouda cheese adds about 30 calories but the canadian bacon reduces the calories by 20 calories for a net gain of 10 calories. Definitely worth as far as taste goes.

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 451.4
  Total Fat 11.9 g
      Saturated Fat 5.6 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.9 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 3.4 g
  Cholesterol 172.4 mg

  Total Carbohydrate 24.7 g
      Dietary Fiber 1.5 g
      Sugars 3.1 g
  Protein 56.9 g
Nutrition Facts

Monday, February 7, 2011

Banana Bread

This recipe is an adjusted family favorite. It is super delicious and fairly low cal. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

1 3/4 c Whole Wheat Flour
3/4 c Oat Flour
1 c Sugar
7 Mashed Bananas (Medium or Large)
1 t Salt
2 t Baking Soda
1 t Vanilla
2 Eggs
1/2 c Applesauce

Combine all ingredients, and bake @ 350 degrees for 30-60 minutes. Slice 1/4 inch slices. Makes 32 servings. The huge difference in temperatures is due to the vairance in banana sizes. The loaves are done just like a cake when the edges pull away from the sides of the bread pans, and a toothpick comes out clean from the center. This makes heavenly french toast, regular toast, or just a slice of bread with a little butter on it.


Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 86.0
  Total Fat 0.6 g
      Saturated Fat 0.2 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.2 g
  Cholesterol 13.3 mg
  Sodium 156.1 mg
  Potassium 147.0 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 19.6 g
      Dietary Fiber 1.8 g
      Sugars 9.9 g
  Protein 1.9 g Nutrition Facts calculated on