Does it make sense to call a loaf “rugged”? Because that’s what would say about this bread: it’s simple and hearty and rugged, like a sandwich bread with character that won’t squish between your fingers like really soft, pillowy breads. I like the bit of twang that the buttermilk lends but at the same time, it’s balanced by the touch of sweetness from the honey, all in a 100% whole wheat loaf of bread.
JMonkey’s Buttermilk and Honey Whole-Wheat Sandwich Bread
- Whole wheat flour : 500 g or about 4 cups
- Salt: 10 g or 1.25 tsp
- Instant yeast: 3 g or 1 tsp
- Water: 185 g or ¾ cup + 1 Tbs
- Buttermilk: 185 g or ¾ cup + 1 Tbs*
- Honey: 42 g or 2 Tbs
- Unsalted butter: 14 g or 1 Tbs
*I substituted 185 g of milk with a bit of yogurt mixed into it (and let that stand for about 5-10 min) for the buttermilk.
- Whole wheat flour: 100%
- Salt: 2%
- Instant yeast: 0.6%
- Water: 38%
- Buttermilk: 38%
- Honey: 8.4%
- Unsalted butter: 2.8%
Mix: Add the salt to the flour. Mix them thoroughly and then add the yeast, also mixing. Melt the butter and mix it with the buttermilk and water in a separate bowl. Add the water, buttermilk, melted butter and honey to the flour, mixing well until everything is hydrated.
I then kneaded this dough by hand until it was relatively smooth and slightly sticky but not very tacky. This will feel less smooth and a bit wetter than a dough made with all-purpose flour, but I tried to avoid adding more flour at this point because I didn’t want the loaf to become overly dense from using too much flour.
Bulk fermentation: 2 – 2.5 hours at room temperature, with a stretch-and-fold at the halfway mark.
Shaping: I shaped these into two sandwich loaves and placed them into 9″ x 5″ loaf pans (though 8.5″ x 4.5″ would probably be better).
Final rise: until slightly less than doubled.
Bake: 350F for about 50-55 min.
* * *