Monday, August 16, 2010

Modern Baker Challenge: Seven grain and seed bread

My dad asked hubby to have me make and bring sandwiches to the ballpark yesterday. "I can't," said hubby. "We don't have any bread in the house."

"No bread in the house?!" asked my dad, incredulously. "How does an obsessive bread baker not have bread in the house?!"

Indeed. So this morning, I opened The Modern Baker and turned to seven grain and seed bread which has gotten good reviews from both Andrea and Phyl. I love a good multi-grain, and was pretty happy with the recipe from the BBA until I tried Mags' oatmeal bread which became my go-to recipe. Hamelman's was great, too. Like I said, I love multi-grain breads.

I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly this bread came together. I started it at 6:30 this morning and it was ready for sandwiches well before lunch at 11:30.

Nick Malgieri calls for a cup of seeds ~ 1/3 cup each of poppy seeds, sesame seeds, and sunflower seeds. I didn't have them on hand, and we really needed bread, so I figured that I'd just make do with what I had on hand, and if the bread was good, try it again with the called-for seeds. I was able to gather a little under 3/4 cup of seeds: poppy, sesame, and flax. I added some brown rice, too, to the oatmeal soaker. I was also just about out of whole wheat flour, so I used what I had left and then filled in the rest with white whole wheat. I also used all-purpose flour and rye flour.

The dough was really, really wet. Was it because I weighed my ingredients instead of measuring? I feel like I get more flour when I scoop it into a measuring cup. At any rate, I had to add almost a cup of extra flour before I got a dough that wasn't so sticky that it glopped all over the bowl and my hands. And I'd even used less water, just in case. With the extra flour, it behaved beautifully.

Once it was ready to proof, the dough rose really quickly; it doubled in just under an hour. I'm not sure why, as our heat wave has passed and it is absolutely gorgeous here right now; our house was a comfortable 69 F this morning. After forming, the loaves rose quickly again, filling the pans in about 45 minutes. They took about 35 minutes to reach an internal temperature of 185 F.

This bread made an awesome turkey sandwich for lunch, and it was also incredibly delicious with butter. Hubby and I both loved it. Unfortunately the kids don't care for breads with interesting textures (ie, seeds), so they didn't like it at all. Still, I would easily make it again ~ if the kids don't like it, it just means more for us!


  1. My favorite bakery bread is multi-grain with flax seeds. Just fyi. :-)

  2. Nice loaf! I forgot to mention in my 2nd write-up (I did in my first) that I wasn't a big fan of the poppy seeds in the dough. I really love poppy seeds ON my bread, but not IN my bread - so next time I would omit them... But still, this makes a great multigrain bread. Btw, can you believe I have absolutely NO flour in the house right now, only whole berries? So I had to turn to Reinhart's Multigrain Breads and am making a 100% whole wheat bread.

  3. Looks great! I'm SO behind on the breads. Glad you liked it even though the kids weren't wild about it.