Friday, March 18, 2011

That LOVELY Bread - My Tweaks

UPDATED June 16, 2011 - ^ indicates ingredient changes (mostly amounts), resulting in a consistently more beautiful loaf, and also carb count reduced by almost 25% for the loaf!

As I've posted previously, I found this recipe for bread, made it, and it was the best one I've ever tried! But of course, after the first time, I had to mess with it. When I follow a recipe at all, I never follow it exactly, and almost always add more tweaks with each successive making of it. This has been no different. I've made the bread probably a dozen times since the first, and now I have a loaf that I like the best. It isn't as spongy (although there is still some sponginess to it) as the original, and I like the texture and the flavor better. So here is my revision of that wonderful original recipe!

- 1 tsp sugar
- 3 tsp yeast
- 3/4c hot water

I sprinkle the first 2 ingredients across the bottom of my pan, then add the water fairly slowly, all around, so that it mixes as it lands, then close the lid. As the yeast is getting happy, I prepare the remaining ingredients.

Into a medium mixing bowl I whisk together

- 3/4c vital wheat gluten^
- 3/4c wheat protein Isolate^
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2/3c baking mix*^
- 1/2c ground flax

Into a smaller dish I whip together until frothy:
- 2 eggs
- 2T plain full-fat yogurt^
- 10 drops liquid sucralose

In another small dish I melt
- 2T real butter

By this time, my yeast is mixture is foamed up and singing drunken sailor songs. I gently stir in the egg mixture with a spatula, then the butter. Then I add the dry ingredients. I set the machine to 1.5# loaf, light color, basic cycle (3 hours), and start it. Then I wash up the dishes I'd used, except the spatula, and by that time it is mixed pretty well, except for a fair amount of dry ingredients around the sides. The paddle and my spatula dance as I scrape that back into the dough, then I close the lid and leave it alone to consummate the loaf.

I don't touch it again until it beeps that the mixing/rising is done, when I wash my hands and lift out the dough to remove the paddle. I pat the dough back into the pan so that it's even all around, and let it finish.

NOTE: The dough won't be as risen as it will eventually get at this point. It will continue to rise as it bakes.

Once the bread is done, I remove the pan and let it cool for about 15-20 minutes, then turn the loaf out onto a plate, where I leave it, uncovered, overnight. This isn't an essential step, but it lets the crust dry out a bit and makes it easier to cut in the morning. I get 14 slices, about 1/4-3/8" each, out of each loaf, and that lasts us about 4 days. It is fine as bread but even more wonderful as toast :).

* I don't like Bob's Red Mill baking mix very much, but I like soy flour even less, so I'm using up my BRM until it is gone. I've also used a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of oat flour and oat bran which works just fine. I don't think I would use carbquik with it since it has so much leavening in it, but if you try it and it works, let me know ok? :)

The parts of the sum (in net):
sugar - 5g (but I won't count these in the total since the yeast eats 'em up)
yeast - 6g
vital wheat gluten - 18g^
Carbquik baking mix - 4g^
wheat protein isolate - 0g
ground flaxseed - 0g (negligible, pretty much all fiber/oils)
eggs - a little less than 2g
yogurt - negligible, let's say 1g
sucralose - 0g
butter - 0g

Sum total of the parts is about 31gN or a little less, which is a little more than 2gN per slice when cut into 14 slices.

I hope that this works in other bread makers as well as it does in mine :). It sounds complicated when I write it out so completely, but like anything else, once you get the hang of it, it goes quickly. About 10 minutes, start to finish, twice a week is a small price for me to pay to have bread as lovely as this as part of my low carb life!

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