Oatmeal-Flax Bread (whole wheat, of course)

In an effort to make ever healthier breads, this is my latest one. It’s really just a variation on a them of whole wheat breads. This one simply includes oatmeal and flax seed. The big difference is that you have to add even more water to the dough because the oatmeal and flax absorb some. I know that ground flax is said to be healthier because you absorb more nutrients and omega 3 oil, but I really like the crunch of the whole seeds in the finished bread. It is delicious (it I do say so myself), and like all of the breads on this blog, it is really easy if you just follow the steps. Anyhow, the recipe is below.

WholeWheat Oatmeal-Flax Bread
Makes2 or 3 loaves
6cups whole wheat flour, divided
2cups oatmeal, plus additional for coating
½cup flax seed
2tablespoons vital wheat gluten
4cups water, divided
2tablespoons instant yeast, divided
¼cup olive oil
¼cup honey
2teaspoons kosher salt
Separatethe ingredients into two bowls using this ratio: In one bowl combine4 cups of flour, two cups of oatmeal, the flax seed, wheat gluten,and 3 cups of water; stir until just combined. In the second bowlcombine the remaining 2 cups of flour, 1 tablespoon of yeast, and 1cup of water; stir until just combined. Cover the bowls and allow theingredients to rest and begin fermenting for at least an hour, but upto 12. Then combine the contents of bowl bowls into the bowl of anupright mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the remaining tablespoonof yeast, along with the olive oil, honey, and salt. Knead the doughon medium speed for about 8 minutes, then cover and allow to rise forone hour. Transfer the dough to a work surface, cut it into two orpieces, gently shape it into loaves. Dust the counter with extraoatmeal and roll the loaves in it, gently pressing oatmeal into thesurface of the raw dough. Place the loaves into oiled loaf pans,cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rise for 45 minutes. Preheat anoven to 425F. Bake the bread for about 30 minutes, or until goldenbrown and sounds hollow when tapped on. Remove the bread from theirpans and allow to cool for 10 minutes before slicing.

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