You probably already figured out from the title that this is my take on a recipe that hails from Eastern Europe. I honestly don't remember this bread from the 'legendary Bernie's Bakery' from my childhood in Nova Scotia. But it could have been there, and I just didn't know it. Could be my family didn't buy this kind of bread. Whatever. This bread is super healthy and super easy. Just pay attention to the details, of course, and be patient. But that's good advice for just about anything.
Here's What You'll Need:
- 2 Tbs. dry yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 1/2 cups milk, scalded
- 1/3 cup butter/margarine
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 cup molasses*
- 3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 cups quick cooking rolled oats
- a handful of various seeds (sunflower/pumpkin etc.) for added texture if desired
1) Make sure have all the ingredients ready before starting.
2) Place the yeast, water and milk in a large bowl, and mix thoroughly. Wait about 10 minutes, then add the butter/margarine, salt and molasses*.
3) Mix in 3 cups of the flour, the whole wheat flour and the oats. Then gradually mix in the rest of the flour using only as much as needed to make a soft dough. If using, add the seeds now.
4) Remove the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead gently until the dough is smooth and elastic.
5) Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat then cover to let it rise until doubled, about one and a half hours.
6) Deflate the dough. Divide it into two equal pieces then shape it into two loaves or rolls if you prefer. Place the shaped dough into two 9 X 5 loaf pans (23 X 13 cm), or place the rolls on a covered baking sheet, brush with melted butter and cover for the second rise. About 1 hour.
7) About 20 minutes before baking time, preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C). Bake for about 35 minutes (about 17 minutes for rolls) or until deep brown. Cool on a rack. For a softer crust, you can brush the hot loaves/rolls with melted butter when you remove them from the oven.
* Molasses makes the bread a little tangy and, of course, colors the dough dark brown. If you prefer you can use honey and the bread will be golden rather than dark brown.