Hey Linda Jones! This one is for you! :D :D
Last Friday I got to meet my neighbor across the street. Her name is Mary and she's a very nice lady. Paige and I thought she and her husband, Joe, might like some fresh bread! (Did you get that.. I live across the street from Mary and Joseph. LOL!!!)
When I had the bakery, there was a gal who came in every other day to buy wheat bread. She loved it. She even said her husband would send her in even if she didn't feel like it because he NEEDED the bread. Now that I think of it, they must have consumed a lot of bread on a daily basis if she was coming in every other day. She was a great customer.
I love wheat bread too. For some reason it just screams "healthy" to me.. even though I still use a little white bread flour, and honey. You will probably find that this bread rises like crazy. You would think the opposite when it comes to wheat because whole wheat has virtually NO gluten. (Remember? Gluten is that thing that helps give bread dough elasticity. It's a good thing.)
Start with 1 cup heated milk. Put that in a bowl with 3 Tbsp butter and 1 tsp sugar. Yeast loves sugar so don't leave it out. It's just 1 tsp!!
Add 1 cup warm water and 4 tsp yeast (or two of those little pouches). Let the yeast proof for about 10 minutes.
Add 1/3 cup honey.
And then break in 2 eggs.
It's time to put the bowl on the mixer and add the flour. I use a little white bread flour *and* wheat flour. Wheat flour is really heavy and I have found through trial and error that it just.won't.rise if you use all wheat.
Once you attach the dough hook and have the bowl on. Add 3 cups regular bread flour. Once you've added the flour turn on low speed. Add 1 tsp salt.
Switching the wheat flour, add 1/2 cup at a time until the dough starts pulling together.
This is what it will look like. Remove from the bowl and knead. Don't add too much more wheat flour as you knead because it won't rise well.
You should be able to see a slight indentation in the top of the dough if you push your fingers in. And then it will disappear.
Spray your mixing bowl with PAM and put your dough back in. Let rise for an hour or until double in size. It's a cold day here in New York so it took a little longer to rise.
Once it's risen, punch the dough down and split in half.
If the dough is really sticky, knead a little more flour into it.
I use my rolling pin to roll the dough out a little. Roll up like a log.
Spray bread pans with Pam and put the formed dough in. Cover and let rise. Turn on the oven to 375* at this time.
When the dough starts peaking over the top of the pan, it's time to put in the oven. Bake for about 30-40 minutes.