October 15, 2008

Oats Whole-wheat Bread - I say Roll

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I would rather call them rolls, but they are larger than rolls and smaller than a regular loaf of bread, and there in lay my confusion with naming it. So call it whatever you want, this bread/roll/mini loaf is just the fresh, home-made bread that we all crave for.

Bread making is known to be therapeutic, I don't know why, nor do I have the facts to prove it, but I would like to believe it.
Not many things in cooking is as satisfying as using your hands to make it, knead it, watch it grow, and then bake it off to a comforting perfection.
Nothing says comfort like bread, and making it is nothing less of sheer pleasure.

And I hate to stress the point, but if you are eating bread, whole wheat is the kind you should entrust your body with. Well, at least most of the times.

Let me talk about the origin of this recipe a little bit. It was taught at a "PCC cooks" class which I was assisting. PCC is a health foods stores and has various classes on healthy food concepts and nutritious cooking methods. Not all their classes focus on health, but some do, and I try to take in as much information I can. So far, so good.

From my bread making experience, here are 6 tips for a good loaf:
(This is not the end of all, I will make more bread, and I will have a lot more to share)

->I am guilty of using fancy yeasts in the past, but for real a good normal "Instant yeast" should do the job neatly.
"Highly active" sounds like something that only explosives should be labelled.

->Flours high in protein yield very good loaves. Bread flour is certainly one, but not having used that before, and for "healthy" reasons I would rather stick to the whole wheat kind. White whole wheat is lighter in color and yields a lighter loaf than the regular whole wheat flour.

->Refrigerate whole wheat flour. They become rancid if stored at room temperature. Unlike all purpose flour, it is unbleached, unrefined and filled with nutrients and those are best preserved when refrigerated.

->If you don't use a bread machine, like me and many others, kneading by hand is a non-compromising option. Infact, it gives you the satisfaction of making it all with your own hands. Knead for at least 15 min to get the gluten working in the dough.
It is hard to over-knead the bread dough.

->Hot water kills the yeast, and cold water fails to activate the yeast. Warm water is ideal, not too hot, not too cold.

->Patience is key, let the dough rise. Let the yeast do its job.

So to get off to a nice promising start, I lost the original recipe! (Laughing devilishly)
I am going to try to get the recipe and the method off of my head right now. But I promise good results if you get around to trying it.

On another note, thanks to Uma, Suma, G.Pavani, Shama, Vibaas and Curry Leaf for the nice "Butterfly award" they so kindly passed over to me. I really appreciate it girls. :)

Oats Whole-wheat Bread/Roll

Ingredients:

White whole wheat flour - 1 and 1/4 cup
Cooked oats - 1 cup
Honey - 1 tbsp
Olive oil - 1 tbsp
Toasted Sunflower seeds - 1 tbsp
Yeast - 1 tbsp
Warm water - 1/4 cup (use less or more to knead)
Celtic sea salt - 1/4 tsp (or to taste)
Quick oats - A handful to roll the dough in

Method:

Mix cooked oats, honey, and oil and set aside.

Add the warm water to the yeast and let it rest for 5 min. It will become frothy.

Mix the flour, yeast, oats mixture and the salt and start kneading. Add more warm water if needed.

Knead for about 15 minutes till the dough is soft and smooth. Add the sunflower seeds and work them in for 2 minutes.
Transfer it onto a large greased bowl.

Cover the dough and let them sit for at least an hour or two to rise. The more the better.

Preheat oven to 375F.

The bread dough should have doubled in size. Then, take it out and knead them again by hand for 5 minutes. There is no need to punch it down!

Shape it into a loaf/roll shape, wet the top surface with a little splash of water and roll it over the quick oats. This is just to give the top an nice look.

Score the surface and set the roll on a baking sheet on the top rack and bake at 375F for 30-35 minutes or till it becomes brown on top. The bread should sound hollow when tapped.

Let rest for about an hour before devouring.

Serve warm with a good, light cholesterol-free butter spread or fruit preserves.

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This goes to Susan's Yeast spotting, Divya's Diet foods.

70 comments:

  1. my goodness.. the bread looks very good.. expert aita pola iruku? looks better than a store bought bread!

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  2. Whole wheat bread looks soooo healthy and soft....Great pics..

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  3. wow... really fantastic ... looks really nice & soft....

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  4. ooh!divya dear it looks awesome...i will try it

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  5. Nice tips on break making! Thanks!

    I tried baking bread just once a long time ago in India. After that my husband made me promise that I will not bake what I can buy! Haha! Just today, I decided to break that promise, and bought a pack of instant yeast and white flour! lets see what shapes up!

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  6. hoo hooo i am the first to comment it. Lovely bread and beautiful presentation. gr8 yar.

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  7. A pretty looking loaf...oops roll! Risen well and looks good with the butter. Now! isn't it brown????

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  8. Thats a fiber rich bread/roll whatever it is ,it just looks like perfectly done!

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  9. Wow Amazing..loved the clicks..healthy bread, i say TOO GOOD...

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  10. I'd probably just go with a small, baby type loaf. That would make one monster roll sandwich :) I love the addition of the whole wheat, and the oats add extra flavor and fiber too. Great for breakfast.

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  11. Oats with whole wheat sounds good. Thanks for a healthy breakfast recipe :)

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  12. I love adding oats to my whole wheat bread. The texture looks so lovely!

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  13. nothin therapeutic than kneading the dough.........I just get a high whenever I see that my dough has risen almost double in volume...

    Th oats on the surface give it a rustic look..

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  14. Thank you for stopping by my blog and for the nice comment. I appreciate it. This little loaf of bread looks delicious! I'm off to check out your blog a bit more.

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  15. Have something for u yaar! Check it out here
    http://fooddamaka.blogspot.com/2008/10/my-first-blog-award.html

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  16. I think you put your finger on exactly why bread making is therapeutic. What a lovely whole grain bread -- thanks for sending it to YeastSpotting!

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  17. Delicious Divs,I believe it is a loaf -healty whole grain loaf.Thanks for the recipe,Book marked

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  18. Anu kuch to socho yar... post kerne se pehle... :)). kitni jaldi jaldi try karun. looking very tempting dear. again this is bookmarked. abhi pista icecream bhi book ke hai...

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  19. You may call it mini loaf :-)
    They looks so yumm.
    Especially with the butter

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  20. Perfecto! wow! I am trying this for sure :)

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  21. I agree that making bread is therapeutic. Especially when you get your hand on the dough and roll it and knead over and over. I guess that is one of the best ways to get in contact with your food.. ? Great bread. I love the oats on top :)

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  22. I could live on bread and butter. This little loaf looks delicious. I love that you added sunflower seeds.

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  23. U r rocking gal with ur baking goodness :) Love the crust and the slice with butter!

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  24. Thanks for the tips Divya, will make a note while making my bread some day. Your posts really tempt me into baking.

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  25. Divya this is absolutely brilliant looks awesome...I have been wanting to bake bread especially with oats for sooo long...hopefully will try this soon :-)

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  26. looks very healthy and delicious...theres a small treat in my blog for u...collet it soon dear..

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  27. I admit..It gives a great pleasure making home made bread.And is addictive too:)Long since I made whole wheat bread..Havent tried with oats though..Nice recipe..And thanks for sending it to the diet event..

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  28. I admit..It gives a great pleasure making home made bread.And is addictive too:)Long since I made whole wheat bread..Havent tried with oats though..Nice recipe..And thanks for sending it to the diet event..

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  29. Now thats what I call pretty!..:)..

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  30. healthy one.. i would love to try it out since its made of wheat flour :)

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  31. that looks real perfect

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  32. Lovely snapshots of the oats-whole wheat bread.

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  33. Bread looks scrumptous... I always wanted to write about Wheat flour, thanks for sharing those wonderful tips...

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  34. This loaf looks perfect. I do think bread-making is therapeutic, especially when you see the results emerge after all that work! Those are great tips, by the way. I sometimes substitute whole-wheat pastry flour in recipes that call for all-purpose because it gives the same low-gluten effect and is healthier.

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  35. Hi Anu,
    They are my parents. They are in Pondicherry now.

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  36. I have never baked a bread in my life. this is definitely tempting me to try...

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  37. bread looks really delicious.

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  38. Gorgeous looking bread Anudivya.

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  39. This bread is just AMAZING Divya!! Nothing short of what you see in a store, actually to be true, it looks even better!! I am SOOOOOOOOO tempted to try. I am starting with baking (did 1 successful cake baking last week) and want to definitely try this. My husband will LOVE it I am sure.

    As I am new, pardon my ignorance. What do you mean by cooked oats? can you please elaborate? Also why celtic salt? Where do you buy Yeast from (store name/brand will be great to start with)?

    Thanks a ton! and keep up the good "bake"

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  40. has come out really good...was the outer crust soft too..I have problems with that..looks beautiful..

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  41. Gorgeous Divya..that one looks just out from a bakery counter!!You are a master baker...using whole wheat flour and oats makes it even more special...good going!!

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  42. Dibs - Bread is one thing which, if you start making it, you will never go back to store-bought ones. The freshness is just unbeatable.

    Adlak - I love your enthusiasm! :)

    Sunshinemom - Whole wheat breads are generally brown, since I made it with white whole wheat flour it is a little lighter than the regular one, which would be darker. The pictures were taken at night, that might have something to do with it as well :(

    Adam - A monster sandwich! Why didn't I think of it before? That should have freaked the readers out. Dang!

    G.Pavani & Suma - Thanks so much for the award girls :)

    Bhawana - Main kya karoon yaar... I just can't seem to keep my hands off the blog or cooking :)

    Usha - How did it turn out???

    Vaishali - I was told that whole wheat pastry flour is not suitable for baking breads since it has a lower protein content than the regular ones. I am guilty of making a lot of bread with w.w.p.flour before I knew this fact.
    But as you said, they are a great healthy substiute for a.p. flour in cakes and cookies.

    Purvi - I couldn't find your blog or ID, so I am leaving the answer to your query here...
    Firstly, pls dont be apologetic for asking something, we all learn here, so nobody is perfect.

    Celtic salt is unrefined, moist sea salt, and resembles rock salt. It is not iodized, but it just adds a nice flavor especially when added to breads. But this is optional, you can use whatever salt you use for cooking everyday.
    That is totally fine.
    Cooked Oats: I used old fashioned oats, not the quick minute ones. So to cook one cup with water, check the package instructions of the oats brand you buy.
    As for the yeast, I buy "Baker's yeast" from the local health food store. They keep it refrigerated. But if you don't find this, just buy a regular "Instant yeast" which is activated by adding warm water. No fancy ones are needed.
    You should be able to find it in the baking aisle of your grocery store.

    Divya Kudua - Thanks for considering me a master baker, but sadly I have a long way to go before I claim that title!
    For now, since you gave it, I will take it ;) LOL.

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  43. perfect divya......how could you make such a perfect one......i should start learning from u...

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  44. Perfect loaf. You seem to be a Pro in bread making.

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  45. thanks for the visit to my blog. i like yours too.
    the bread looks great, too! I love making whole wheat breads. looks delicious.
    and i agree that it's therapuetic to make it from hand. it seems more satisfying, too.

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  46. looks delicious.....a gift for u in my blog...check out

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  47. PICTURE LOOKS GREAT, AWESOME,PERFECT,
    LIKE THE ONE IN THE US STORES. GOOD JOB. KEEP IT UP.THERE IS A WOW FACTOR IN WHATEVER YOU DO. YOUR PARENTS MUST REALLY FEEL PROUD OF YOU.
    Ramkumar

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  48. We bake a lot of bread, both because we love the stuff, and also because it helps me vent after a long day at the office. I never realised whole wheat flour needed refrigeration. Gonna move it into the fridge now. Thanks for the tip!

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  49. talk about a hearty, dense, and decadent loaf of bread! what a perfect creation--nicely done.

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  50. Bread/roll looks perfect ....that's a nice version of healthy bread and thanks for the handly tips...gud one dear

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  51. Bread looks lovely...nice pix

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  52. Hi Anu,
    Thanks a lot about the half and half tip. Great idea :)

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  53. Hey Divya, thanks for stopping by my blog. This is my first time visiting your blog.Pictures and Recipes are really fantastic!!!!

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  54. This sound to be a nice recipe. Looks so good. Turned out prefect for u. I really want to try this bread.....

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  55. Bread looks nice and perfect..Would love to make it sometime..

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  56. hi anudivya, i checked out some of the recipes from your blog and am all excited. You have lot of healthy recipes that are likeable by my first kid who is a picky eater :) Btw, i have started 'following' your blog :-)

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  57. Looks delicious and healthy!

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  58. looks wonderful! Hey, I envy you ! I am still in the hope of being able to bake such good ones.
    But, thank you so much for such basic and excellent tips, they are surely motivating!

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  59. Hello AnuDivya,

    Thank you so much for your comments on my page, I'm really taken aback seeing your work and presentation too. I simply love your work so neat yet so tasty and tempting. I'm located at NJ, USA, so where do you reside. All the very best to you in your endavours.

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  60. Hello Divya,

    Unlike other times, this time I have truly tried your recipe (with huge failure :-(!!) and am back with questions.

    First of all, I know my yeast was bad and hence the dough did not rise at all, well almost not at all. I bought some good, fresh yeast again yesterday and am going to give this a try again. Did you have any recommendations on what to look/what not to look for in a good yeast.

    Also, when I rolled the dough, it was very sticky and liquidy (not sure why). I added some more flour, but then I was not sure whether I should have added more yeast to it for that extra flour...

    Could you elaborate on the consistentcy of the dough please?

    I really want to bake a bread that looks as beautiful as yours :D and am going to give this another try for sure!!!

    Have never been a good baker, but your posts keep on inspiring me, so am going to try again :-)

    Appreciate further tips :D

    -Purvi

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  61. I am so sorry about the experience.
    It probably must have been the yeast that did not cause the dough to rise. Points to note:

    1. Buy a good quality yeast (which you already have!). And no, yeast does not substitute for flour. The dough should not be too hard or dehydrated. (Refer point 4)
    2. Yeast is a live thing, needs to be refrigerated. And will lose its potency with time. So, buy them fresh and only so much that you will use.
    3. I recommend instant yeast/baker's yeast.
    4. More water/hydration in the dough, bigger air pockets/holes in the dough, smaller/denser breads have lesser hydration.
    5. It is important to let the yeast froth, add yeast, sugar (yes a 1/2 tsp of sugar would do the trick) and warm water and let it sit for 10 minutes. Mine froths up like crazy... almost like a dome.
    6. Whole wheat bread is a denser bread than the regular ones, so do not expect them to be light and airy.
    6. Another thing that might have caused the bread not to rise is, using very hot or very cold water (it kills the yeast, or fails to activate it)
    7. Purvi, lastly... since this is a little advanced recipe (with oats and everything) and if this is your first time baking bread, I would recommend the Semolina bread I posted two days back. It is a perfect place to start. And then maybe you can try this one... just a suggestion. You can find the recipe here:
    http://mixtomatch.blogspot.com/2008/11/semolina-bread-loaf-amateurs-delight.html

    Hope it helps. Ping me back if you have any Q. Good luck! :)

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  62. Hi Divya,

    So I took advantage of being snowed in and tried this bread yet again.

    With a good yeast, I got a good bread (but well I have nothing to compare against and hence am rating my bread good myself :P!!) I used the atta that we use for chapatis typically. My bread was not "dark brown" as your pics show rather it was mostly very light brown. Moreover, the crust seemed a little hard but inside was perfect soft and nice. It was indeed dense but we like dense bread :-) Also it had a sour-ish flavor, after-taste which we love. I was so glad to have gotten this through :-) I have yet to try the semolina bread, but that is just because of lack of some equipment/ingredients.

    One question though - the next day my bread got a little brittle the next day. Is this expected?

    Thanks for the great tips and the wonderful recipe.

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  63. Purvi - I am glad it was a good first attempt!
    Next time, try getting the 100% white whole wheat flour if possible.
    I would not recommend using Atta for making bread, since the protein content (to form gluten) in that flour is very low, and the texture/nutrition might not be what is expected out of a good loaf of bread.
    I tried it once too with Atta, I had to experiment and I did... it was okay (which I have not posted yet).
    The longer you let the dough rise, the bread keeps longer at room temperature.
    But I normally just do a 2 hr and a 1 hr rise and it turns out fine for me. I don't try to keep it at a warm place and try to work up the yeast faster, so that helps too I guess.
    For the semolina bread, our sooji works well too, try to grind it in a blender for a few minutes, and you should be good to go.

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  64. i was thinking of trying your receipe... have quaker oats.. is that gud enuf for this receipe? also wer would i get cooked oats? can you boil the same? if so how do u knw its dne!

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  65. i was thinking of trying your receipe... have quaker oats.. is that gud enuf for this receipe? also wer would i get cooked oats? can you boil the same? if so how do u knw its dne!

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  66. P - Yes, any brand of Oats is fine. Follow box instructions for cooking oats.
    As far as I know, I have not seen pre-cooked oats. Quick oats may not work with this recipe, try to get the old fashioned ones.

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  67. I'm trying this today. I think I'll try to shoot it, but I don't think it will be as pretty as your picture!

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  68. so much lovely........... u r an amazing cook :)

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Thank you for taking the time to comment on this post. I will try to respond to queries as soon as I can. If I miss anything that needs to be addressed... please feel free to ping me again.
Happy cooking/baking or whatever it is you are doing in the kitchen! :)