A cardboard box containing two freshly baked loaves of whole wheat bread and a piece of raw dough.
Interesting, when I think about it…I made the starter for the dough last night, mixed the dough this morning, and took it to work with me to bake. But as I was panning the dough I had a bit too much so I thought I’d make pizza for dinner with it. Like pioneers before me carrying their dough starter with them, I carried raw and baked bread back and forth to work on my bike…
Anyhow, pizza to me is nothing more than flat-bread with stuff baked on it. It’s delicious and can be nutritious, but people sometimes make too big of a deal out of it (or it’s pretend complexities)…for simple and really delicious and nutritious pizza recipes (with pictures and instructions), click here. So as usual I rummaged around my fridge and freezer for pizza toppings. I came up with a partial bag of frozen spinach, a head of broccoli which had to be trimmed of a bit of mold, tomato sauce, some cooked turkey (frozen dark meat left over from Thanksgiving), a partial bag of shredded cheese (“Mexican blend”), and an onion, which I sliced and put on the pizza last. I baked the pizza while I did a few chores around the house and it was ready when I was. It was delicious and barely interrupted my evening plan (and having the oven on warmed the rear of the house). Making your own pizza is as easy as making your own bread (easier actually)…I think everyone should do it. The recipe below can be used for bread or pizza dough; and it can be frozen raw or cooked. To see more recipes with a full discussion on how to bake using whole wheat read this Artvoice article. Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll go grab another slice of pizza…
100% Whole Wheat Bread
Makes 2 loaves
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup water
2 teaspoons instant yeast
4 cups whole wheat flour
1 3/4 cups water
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup olive oil
3 teaspoons instant yeast
3 teaspoons kosher salt
In one bowl make a preferment by combining 2 cups of whole wheat flour with 2/3 cups water and 2 teaspoons of instant yeast. Begin the autolyse in another bowl by combining 4 cups of whole wheat flour and 1 1⁄2 cups water. Stir each bowl just enough to combine the ingredients, taking care not to get yeast into the bowl with the autolyse. If the contents in either of the bowls need more water, add a small amount. Cover both bowls and allow to rest and ferment for 30-90 minutes, during which time the preferment will begin it’s job multiplying yeast and fermenting flour, and the autolyse will soak the grain, swelling the gluten.
After an hour or so, combine the ingredients from both bowls into the bowl of an upright mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the honey, olive oil, salt, and 3 teaspoons of yeast (add the yeast and salt on opposite sides of the bowl). Knead the dough on medium speed for about 8 minutes. Place the dough in a lightly oiled container, cover it loosely, and allow to ferment for 1-2 hours, or until doubled in bulk. Deflate the dough and allow it to ferment an additional 30 minutes.
Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and cut it into 2 or 3 pieces. Shape into loaves and place into lightly oiled pans. Loosely cover the loaves with plastic wrap and allow to ferment for 30-60 minutes, or until double in size and when gently touched with a fingertip an indentation remains.
Bake the breads for about 30-40 minutes, adding steam to the oven a few times (either with ice cubes or a spray bottle) and rotating the breads every ten minutes. The breads are done when they are dark brown and sound hollow when tapped upon. Remove the breads from their pans and allow them to cook on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes before slicing.