Wendy B's Wheat Bread
1/3 to 1/2 cup cracked wheat
2 cups boiling water
2 T. butter
Steep wheat in water until softened then cool until water is warm (not hot).
2 T. yeast (or 2 packages)
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 T. salt
Combine these 4 ingredients in a small bowl. Add to above cracked wheat mixture when cooled (to warm).
You will then begin slowly adding flour to the above mixture---amounts will depend on personal taste (either more whole wheat, equal amounts wheat/white or more white flour) and 'feel' of the dough. I like half and half which takes about
2 cups whole wheat flour
2+ cups unbleached flour
for nicer bread I also use "Vital wheat gluten flour" by Bob's Red Mix; 1 tsp. per cup of flour--it seems expensive but you use so little that it goes a long way and makes for less heavy bread.
Dough can be mixed by hand or in a large mixer (KitchenAid, etc.) with a dough hook (my preferred method). Continue to knead dough and add flour until it 'feels right'--not sticky. Put dough in greased bowl and allow to rise until double in size.
Punch down, shape and place in greased loaf pans (should make 2 loaves). Allow dough to rise again. Bake @ 400 for 25-30 minutes. After removing from oven, butter tops.
I like to double the recipe so there is plenty to share! (But give it away quick before you eat it all! )
Sheryl de Groot