Whole Wheat bread rolls are soft and delicious. The rolls are bite-sized and make a perfect snack.     Enjoy with butter, homemade jam or honey.

We are at the peak of winter. The orchards are bare, the shrubbery brown and a calm pervades all around. Winter brings with it subzero temperatures and icy winds. The Sun is pale and mostly thick clouds dominate the sky rendering it ineffective.

Baking days are over. The yeast just refuses to awake from its slumber. It needs to be pampered by keeping the dough in the Sun and then keep moving with the movement of the Sun. A few days back, the day started on a bright note. And the bread baking spirits rose high. The dough was prepared quickly and placed under the pear tree where the Sun gets strongest in the morning. It took 4 hours for the dough to double. Second proofing had to be done in the oven itself. The dough was shaped into small bite-size rolls.

When it comes to baking with whole wheat flour, bread rolls are the best bet. Somehow I feel that the rolls are small in size and cook well through. You don’t get a doughy centre that sometimes happens in a loaf. Well, this is my thought and idiosyncrasy, and I always prefer rolls to loaf.

In this recipe, we make a sponge. That makes the rolls really soft.  The sponge method produces bread with more complex flavours and a lighter texture. This method suits baking with whole grain flours very much. And the dough needs just one rise. This suits baking in the winter.

This time, I decided on shaping rolls in a different way, I made oval rolls and arranged them in an eight-inch cake pan that was greased well and dusted with flour. The rolls came out soft and spongy.

On winter nights, we love to slice our rolls, spread a little butter and toast them on the hot griddle. It makes a lovely accompaniment to a bowl of soup and makes a fulfilling light dinner.

Whole Wheat Bread Rolls (Vegan)



  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons unrefined sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant dry yeast


  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (or, ¼ cup orange juice)
  • Sponge (as above)



Mix all the ingredients mentioned under the sponge in a bowl. Mix 2-3 times to get a smooth batter. When all the ingredients are well incorporated, the mixture will become stringy. Cover and let it sit for I hour. It will rise and become very bubbly.


  1. In a large bowl, take all the ingredients of the dough and add sponge. Mix and knead for 5-6 minutes or until you get a very smooth and satiny and slightly sticky dough.
  2. Grease one 8 inches round cake pan. Pinch small balls of dough and shape them into rolls. Place the rolls in the prepared pan. Cover and keep in a warm place until the rolls double in size.
  3. Bake at 180 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until brown.
  4. Brush warm rolls with butter.
  5. Serve warm. 

Mini Fougasse is inspired by nature. Crisp crust and soft chewy crumb, fougasse has a delicate 
flavour of herbs. it makes a lovely appetizer and a great accompaniment to soups.

Winter is beautiful. The bleakness and dullness has a charm. The bare trees and brown shrubbery also hold beauty. In the monotone, there are myriad shades of nature’s hues. Temperature is dipping with each passing day. The hoarfrost on the leaves and grass crackles and crunches under the feet as we walk around in the garden. The frost on the roof melts when the rays of the Sun reach our side of the hills and water drops roll down the roof and fall on the stones sonorously.

Fruit trees are all bare and the buds are swollen waiting for the Spring to wake them up from the slumber. The Wild Cherry Tree however looks vibrant and glamourous laden with pink dainty flowers. It has become a centre of activity as a million bees, birds and butterflies hover on it for their share of nectar. We often see a Mountain Bulbul on the branches.

Winter dinners need to be simple and light on the stomach. We baked some mini Fougasse to dip into our hot carrot soup.

The Fougasse is inspired by the beauty of the leaves of different shapes, sizes and patterns. We made tiny Fougasse and tried to shape them like the leaves in nature. A dash of dried herbs made it really fragrant and flavourful and we loved it with soup.

Fougasse is a French flatbread that is similar to Italian Focaccia.  The crust is crisp, while the crumb is slightly chewy. Fougasse is traditionally cut to resemble a leaf or sheath of wheat, with open areas within the bread. The open areas help the bread to bake incredibly quickly. The cuts also maximize the surface area of the bread that gets crusty.

Fougasse is easy to prepare. No bread pans and no moulds, just a little creativity and inspiration from nature.

Fougasse is typically served whole or as a part of an appetizer.

Mini Fougasse (Vegan)


  • ½ cup warm water
  • ¼ teaspoon instant dry yeast
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour


  • ½ cup warm water
  • ½ teaspoon instant dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon mixed dried herbs
  • ½ teaspoon salt


For The Preferment

  1. Take water in a medium bowl, add yeast and let the mixture stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Stir in flour and mix to form a shaggy dough. Mix further until the dough becomes smooth and elastic and a little tacky.
  3. Cover and keep aside for 5-6 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.

For The Bread

  1. Mix flour, dried herbs and salt. Keep aside.
  2. In a large bowl, take water, add yeast and stir to mix. Let the mixture stand for 10-2 minutes.
  3. To this, add flour mix, olive oil and preferment. Stir with a sturdy ladle. When the dough comes together as a shaggy mass, cover and let rest for 20 minutes. The dough will hydrate fully.
  4. Now knead on the counter for 5-6 minutes or until you get a  smooth and silky dough. Add a little flour if the dough is very sticky.
  5. Transfer the dough to an oiled counter. Turn around once so that it is evenly coated with oil. Keep in a warm place for around one hour or until double.
  6. Punch the dough. Cut the dough into two pieces. Cut each piece into four small pieces each. Cover and let rest for 5 minutes.
  7. Line a baking tray with a parchment sheet.
  8. Work on one piece of dough at a time. Stretch with hands, use a knife and scissors to make leaves with slits and designs.
  9. Place the leaves on the baking tray keeping space between them. Cover the baking tray and keep it in a warm place for 20-30 minutes or slightly puffy.
  10. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C while the dough is proofing.
  11. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the bread is well browned.
  12. Serve warm.

 Linking to #BreadBakers

BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.
We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

This month the Bread Bakers, hosted by Kelly of Passion Kneaded, are creating bread art. We have shaped bread, decorative bread scoring, and sculpted bread


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