Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Quick Whole Wheat Bread #BreadBakers


It has snowed in the hills and the plains are shivering in the cold wave. It rained day and night yesterday and we knew it must be snowing in the hills. Rain washed away all the dust and next morning a clear sky and clean fresh air greeted us.



We ran to our terrace to see the snow in the hills. It did not snow heavily and only some peaks were white.


 The air was chilly and we saw some Babblers huddled together in our mango tree.


Later, the Sun rose graciously spreading warmth and mirth.


Sitting in the Sun in winters induces lassitude. It is soothing to read a book, oil your hair and do any other chore outside or just doze off. It is a bliss. While we all were outside sunning ourselves in the lawn, the oven timer chimed. 



Our Quick Whole Wheat Bread was ready. A soup and a veggie with would be our dinner tonight.


This is a great recipe. The dough needs just one rise. The crumb is soft and the bread is delicious. This is one bread that I bake quite often and everyone at home loves it.


Quick Whole Wheat Bread

Ingredients

  • 3 cups whole wheat flour (atta)
  • 1 cup very warm water
  • ¾ tablespoons instant dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons+2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons+2teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt

Instructions

  1. To prepare the sponge, stir together 1 cup flour, 1 cup warm water, and yeast. Cover and keep for 15-20 minutes until bubbly and well risen. Prepare sponge in a big bowl.
  2. Grease one 8 ½ x4 ½ inch loaf pan. Dust with cornmeal or with flour.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and 1 cup flour. Stir till the ingredients come together.
  4. Keep adding remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. When stirring becomes difficult, transfer the dough onto a floured counter.
  5. Knead with the heels of the hand. Push the dough with the heels and pull back with fingers. Knead for about 6 to 7 minutes until a soft and supple dough forms.
  6. Shape dough into one 8-inch  log and place in the prepared pan. Cover with a kitchen towel and keep in a warm place.
  7. Allow the bread to rise for about 1 to 2 hours, or until the centre has crowned about 1 inch above the rim of the pan.
  8. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Bake the bread for 30-35 minutes or till the top turns golden brown and the bottom of the pan sounds hollow when tapped.
  9. Cool. Slice when completely cold.
#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the #BreadBakers home page.


This month’s host is Pavani of Cook's Hideout. She chose the theme "Healthy Breads". It is a beautiful way to start new Year the healthy way. Pavani is a talented baker. Check out her blog for some great bread recipes.

BreadBakers



Check out the Healthy Breads that our fellow #BreadBakers have baked this month:



  • Amaranth Flatbread from Mayuri's Jikoni



  • Beet Rye Bread from What Smells So Good?



  • Blueberry Almond Bread from Cindy's Recipes and Writings



  • Brain Booster Pancakes from A Day in the Life on the Farm



  • Grain-free Nutty Carrot Flatbread from A Baker's House



  • Healthier Applesauce Spice Bread from Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks



  • Healthy Whole Grain Bread from The Bread She Bakes



  • Honey Almond Brioche from Kidsandchic



  • Honey Oatmeal Bread from Food Lust People Love



  • Honey Whole Grain Bread from Hostess At Heart



  • Multigrain Pesto Swirl Bread from Herbivore Cucina



  • Quick Whole Wheat Bread from Ambrosia



  • Rugbrød from A Shaggy Dough Story



  • Spiced Besani Paratha from Sneha's Recipe



  • Sprouted Wheat Bread from Palatable Pastime



  • Sweet Potato Loaf from The Wimpy Vegetarian



  • Sweet Potato Millet Bread from The Schizo Chef



  • Ten Grain No Knead Bread from Karen's Kitchen Stories



  • Whole Wheat Brioche Buns from Gayathri's Cook Spot



  • Whole Wheat Pineapple Quick Bread from Basic N Delicious



  • Whole Wheat Carrot Apple Walnut Quickbread from A Salad For All Seasons



  • Whole Wheat White Bean Bread from Cooks Hideout







  • Monday, 2 January 2017

    Chocolate Mendiants




    It’s a cold morning. East is a beautiful blend of pink, orange and gray. Some clouds are aligned in a strange but beautiful pattern. A fish in our pond jumps with an audible “plonk”! Far in the sky, a flock of migratory birds moves in an arched line. Some birds are left out and they seem to be flapping faster to join the group. A beautiful day and another year is unfolding graciously


    Today evening promises to be exciting. Our kids have organised a get together. Some close friends have been invited. We are all busy making cupcakes, chocolate cake, cookies and Mendiants.
    Making goodies together gives joy.



    Mendiants are a French confection that is popular at celebrations or given as gifts on Christmas. They are chocolate discs studded with dry fruits and nuts.  We added a lot of candied peels that we made last weekend. Some Lemon peels were also added.
    Kids love to participate in making them. Make them around Christmas or any special occasion, it is always enjoyable to assemble them with dry fruits and nuts of choice. 


    Chocolate Mendiants
    Ingredients
    • 300 grams bitter sweet chocolate or dark chocolate (take two slabs of 150 grams each)
    • Handful green raisins
    • Handful golden raisins
    • Handful dry cranberries / candied cherries
    • 5-6 dry figs cut into long thin strips
    • 5-6 dry apricots cut into long thin strips
    • 1/4 cup thinly sliced candied orange and lemon peels
    • Handful almonds chopped
    • Handful pistachios chopped

    Instructions
    1. Break chocolate into small pieces. Melt in a double boiler.
    2. While the chocolate is melting, take a parchment sheet big enough to cover your baking tray. Make circles of 2 1/2 inches with a pencil. Turn the sheet. Circles must be visible.
    3. Pour 1 tablespoon of melted chocolate inside the circle and spread with the back of the spoon to get a perfect circle.
    4. Arrange dry fruits and nuts.
    5. Repeat till melted chocolate is over. If the chocolate becomes firm melt again and continue.
    6. Keep the tray with Mendiants in the refrigerator for an hour.
    7. Remove and store in an airtight container.

    My Tip: Prepare Mendiants with one slab at a time. Reheat chocolate as needed. Use your creativity in decorating the Mendiants. Use pepita seeds, walnuts, cashews etc.

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