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Monday, March 12, 2012

Wheat Sandwich Loaf

Christmas before last, my in-laws gave me a pain de mie pan from King Arthur flour. Somehow, I've managed to let it sit in my closet for two years before running it through its paces.

This long, heavy duty pan has a sliding lid and is specifically for making sandwich loaves. It came with a recipe for a soft white bread, but I prefer a wheat loaf. I started trying to think of the best, softest wheat bread I've ever eaten. Hands down, my raisin bread was the winner of that contest. I made a few minor adjustments and now have a wonderful, soft, delicious wheat sandwich bread.

While you can mix this by hand, it is much easier in a stand mixer. It's not the stickiest dough I've ever worked with, but it will never become completely smooth. Resist the urge to add too much flour to reduce the stickiness while kneading. Knead for 5-6 minutes and then place in a covered, oiled bowl to rise until doubled.

Oil the inside of the pan and lid, if using a 13-inch pain de mie pan, or simply oil one 5x8 loaf pans or one 4x13 pan. Spray an little oil on the counter to keep the dough from sticking while you shape it. Punch the dough down on the counter into a rectangle as long as the pan. At this point, at long as you've lubed the counter, this dough is very nice to work with.

To finish shaping the loaf, roll it up and pinch the seam together. Fold over the ends and pinch together to seal. Place seam side down in the pan.

If using the pain de mie pan, close the lid almost all the way. You want to leave yourself a little peek hole. Cover the open end with plastic wrap. Let rise until the dough is almost to the top of the pan. Close the lid and let continue rising while the oven preheats. If using standard loaf pans, cover with plastic wrap to rise until double.

If using the pain de mie pan, bake covered at 350° F for 25 minutes. Then remove the lid and continue baking for another 15-20 minutes, or until a thermometer registers 190° F. If baking in standard pans, bake at 350° F for 35-45 minutes, until the loaf if nicely browned and registers 190° F. Cool for ten minutes in the pan. Then remove from the pan to cool completely before slicing and packaging.

Wheat Sandwich Loaf
Yield: 1 13" loaf

1 TBS instant yeast
2 3/4 to 3 cups bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup defatted soy flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 cup warm non-fat milk

Mix all ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Knead for 5-6 minutes. Dump into an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until double.

Oil a 13-inch pain de mie pan (and lid) or a 5x8 loaf pan or a 4x13 loaf pan. Lightly oil the counter and punch the dough out into a rectangle the width of the pan you are using. Roll the loaf up, pinching the seams. Fold over the ends and pinch together. Place in the pan seam side down. Place the pain de mie lid on a close so that it is only open one inch. Cover the open bit with plastic wrap to keep the loaf from drying out. If using a standard pan, cover with plastic wrap and let rise until double. If using a pain de mie pan, let rise until it is just about touching the lid, close the cover, and then turn on the oven. When the oven is preheated, the loaf should be fully risen.

If using a pain de mie pan, bake, covered, 25 minutes at 350° F. Remove the lid and then bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until a thermometer registers 190° F inside. If using a standard pan, bake until nicely golden and it also registers 190° F. Let cool in the pan 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool completely before slicing or packaging.

5 comments:

  1. Hi! I just found your blog and adore it! I am determined to bake all of our breads from scratch and want to try this recipe. How long will this bread loaf stay fresh? It generally takes us a week and a half to go through one loaf of bread (but I'm assuming fresh, homemade bread will be eaten much quicker!). Thanks! I already made your hamburger buns and my husband said we're never buying buns again. Just what I want to hear!!

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    1. Thanks, LeAnn. I'm bummed that life has been getting in the way of my blogging (well, only kind of bummed, a baby is a good kind of interference!), but I do have a number of breads already posted. This loaf will stay fresh longer than most because of the soy flour, egg yolk, and oil. Tightly wrapped, I'm going to say at least 5 days (provided your house isn't too warm). If you want to stretch it's shelf life, leave at room temp for three days and then refrigerate. The fridge will firm up the loaf considerably, but will keep any mold at bay for probably another 5 days or more. Let me know how it goes! Glad to hear your husband liked the hamburger buns; it's always a win when the hubby's happy! :-)

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  3. Do you have any suggestions for a substitute for soy flour? I can't handle soy. I have been looking for a good loaf bread and this looks like it could be it as I hate buying store bread with all that extra junk in them. Hubby put a loaf of bread one time in the cabinet and we left it for something like 6 months or so and it didn't mold or get hard! That's when I realized how very much additives are in our processed foods and have since tried to do as much as I can from scratch and read labels religiously now too.
    Anyway appreciate suggestions.
    Thanks

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  4. Sorry I missed this comment last year. (Yikes!) Just wanted to throw out there for you or anyone else with a similar concern, you can just leave the soy flour out if you want and replace with a similar amount of regular flour. The soy flour helps with the texture and keeping qualities of the finished loaf, but the bread would certainly still be quite good without it.

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