Last night I made.. Bread!! I’ve wanted a bread machine for years but couldn’t justify the extra counter space and another appliance in the kitchen. This works perfect and tastes so good – one less thing to buy on my weekly shop!
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups of warm milk
2 Tbsp melted UNSALTED butter
1-3 tablespoons of sugar (add more if you like sweeter bread)
3 tablespoons of active dry yeast (conservative side)
6 cups of whole wheat flour (or 3 cups whole wheat & 3 cups all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons of salt
1 teaspoon of baking powder
Grab a big bowl, and stir the 1/2 cup of warm water, 1 (or more) tablespoons of sugar, 3 tablespoons of yeast. Wait for 5 minutes (no longer – mine went all over the place the first time!) – it should be frothy on the top. While your waiting warm 2 cups of milk and 2 Tbsp of butter in microwave.
Next, add milk and butter to yeast mixture. Using a standing mixer slowly add the 6 cups of flour, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon of baking powder. Mix and knead the dough. (I used dough hook once I had incorporated most of the flour for about 5 minutes then kneaded by hand for another 5-7 minutes.)
Line your slow cooker with cooking (baking) paper and place in your round ball of dough. I will rise in the slow cooker as it heats through. Cook on High power for 2- 2.5 hours. Start checking at every 7-10 minutes until top is sponge-y but springs back and no moisture on the top. The bottom should be a nice brown colour as well as sides. I put mine (just the loaf) in the oven on broil/grill for less than 5 minutes to get a nice crusty top too!
NOTE: You can use a tea towel on top if you want to avoid condensation dripping in down on the loaf. I haven’t tried this myself – let me know how you go!
*Use UNSALTED butter or adjust extra salt added!
*Add MORE sugar if you want a sweet bread like in the shops.
*If you can’t or are not skilled/practiced at kneading try the 50:50 ratio with whole wheat flour and all purpose flour, otherwise you will end up with a very dense loaf.
*Make sure it is completely cooked through – my loaf took 2 1/2 hours!!
Slice and enjoy as whole grain toast or sandwich bread!