Brown bread recipe with step by step photos – detailed post of brown bread with gentle tips, hints and lots of pics. I have tried to answer all the queries I get related to yeast proofing and baking bread in this post.
Since by now I bake a lot of breads at home, I have become pretty good in baking breads. The other side is the bread recipes never get to the blog. I just don’t get the time to take pics and especially the step by step pics.
I have baked buns, rolls, artisan breads and still enjoying baking breads at home. Yet, I shall see to it that I do add different bread recipes to the blog so that you can also bake beautiful breads in your own kitchen. I have already managed to post recipes of White bread, Sandwich bread (whole wheat), Margherita pizza and Thin crust pizza.
This brown bread
Is soft, light & has a great texture. here both whole wheat flour and all purpose flour/Maida is used in 1:3 proportion. you can tweak this proportion to half-half or make it 2:1. i recently also made Garlic bread with 2:1 proportion of whole wheat flour and all purpose flour which was also good.
On whole wheat bread
Coming to Whole wheat bread, when baking with 100% whole wheat flour, the bread is dense and nutty. So if you want a lighter texture, then adding all purpose flour is required, especially if you stay in India, where we don’t get gluten powder easily. however, I shall also post whole wheat bread in some time.
Kneading the bread
I have used kitchenaid artisan mixer to knead the brown bread here. However you can also knead in a food processor or by hand. I have mentioned both the instructions for kneading with hand or kitchenaid mixer in the recipe details below. If using any other stand mixer, food processor or bread machine, then follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Yeast & flours
Just remember to use use good quality yeast and flours. here I have used the bluebird brand of dry yeast. The flours are organic stone ground/Chakki ground whole wheat flour/atta and organic all purpose flour/maida.
Yeast proofing, bread leavening & temperatures
I have always used dry active yeast for baking. When you use dry active yeast, then first you have to activate these in warm water. The temperature range of warm water for activating dry yeast, should be between 40 to 46 degrees C/105 degrees F to 115 degrees F. A much lower or higher range of temperature won’t allow the yeast to activate. You can also use a thermometer to check the temperature of the water.
If the yeast does not proof, then throw away the mixture and start again. If again it does not proof, probably the yeast is out of date. when you use dry active yeast, you have to allow the dough to rise twice, once in a bowl and then in the baking pan. Dry active yeast is easily available in super stores.
The dough needs warm temperature to leaven. So if you stay in colder regions, then preheat your oven to 49 to 66 degrees C/120 to 150 degrees F for 10-12 minutes. Turn off the oven. Place the bread dough inside till it doubles in size. Remember to remove the bread out before you preheat the oven again for baking.
Satisfaction guaranteed 🙂
Once you start baking breads at home, you will love baking them so much and you will be less prone to buying ready breads. In fact even artisan breads can be easily made at home. Baking is therapeutic and when you see the bread leavening, baking & rising in the oven, it surely is a feel good thing. The whole house is fragrant with the lovely aroma of breads getting baked.
Since bread baking intimidates many of us, this is a step by step post which will help you in someway overcoming your bread baking fears.
How to make brown bread recipe
1: warm water in a pan or microwave. Add sugar. Add yeast and stir. Let this mixture remain undisturbed for 10 mins. after 10 minutes, the whole mixture becomes bubbly and frothy.
2: on speed 1 of kitchenaid mixer, mix the salt with the flours for some seconds.
3: now add the yeast mixture, oil, water and on speed 2, mix the dough.
4: continue on speed 2 for a couple of minutes, and the dough will begin to knead.
5: after 2 minutes, this is how the dough appears.
6: feel the dough and if it looks dry, add some warm water (keep some warm water handy). When the dough is fully kneaded, stop the kitchenaid. Below pic of the dough after 4 minutes. Stretch a small piece of dough between your fingers in to a thin sheet. If it does not tear, it means that the dough is well kneaded.
7: rub some oil or water on the whole dough. Keep in a bowl (i used the same kitchenaid bowl). Cover with a kitchen towel and keep in a warm place for the dough to leaven.
8: after 3 and half hours, the dough has risen. I kept the dough a tad longer due to a cooler temperature here on this day.
Making brown bread
9: punch the dough lightly and just knead lightly.
10: roll the dough into a log shape.
11: seal the edges of the dough below on both sides.
12: place the loaf in a greased or lined loaf pan (9×5 inches) with the sealed edges down.
13: keep covered for 35-40 minutes for the loaf to rise. I kept for an hour.
Baking brown bread
14: before baking, pre heat the oven to 180 degrees C/375 degrees F. With a serrated knife, cut a cross on the top of the dough.
15: you can brush the loaf with some milk or soy milk if you want. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes till the bread browns from top and when you tap on it, it sounds hollow.
16: whilst the bread is still hot, remove the bread with the help of oven mittens/gloves from the loaf pan. Allow the brown bread to cool on a wire rack or tray.
17: Serve the slices warm or keep the brown bread in a bread box. if kept in the fridge, the brown bread stays good for a longer time, especially in a country like ours when keeping bread outside for a longer time is not advised. You can use brown bread to make Bread pakora, veg sandwich and bread roll.
- 2.25 cups organic all purpose flour (maida)
- ¾ cup organic whole wheat flour (atta)
- 1 cup water
- ½ tablespoon dry active yeast or 1 teaspoon instant yeast
- 2 tablespoon organic cold pressed sunflower oil or melted butter
- 1 tablespoon regular sugar or unrefined organic cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon rock salt or regular salt
proofing yeast to make brown bread
- Warm the 1 cup of water.
- Add 1 tbsp sugar and dry active yeast.
- Stir and let the yeast activate.
- This usually takes about 10 minutes.
kneading brown bread dough in a bowl
- Sieve both the flours with salt in a large wide bowl or a large plate with a rim/parat.
- Add the proofed yeast and oil.
- Mix all the ingredients.
- Then begin to knead the dough.
- If the dough feels sticky, then add some flour.
- If it feels dry, then add some water.
- Continue to knead, till you get a smooth dough which when stretched doesn't tear.
kneading brown bread dough in a stand mixer
- Add the flour and salt in the bowl.
- On speed 1 mix the flour & salt for some seconds.
- Add the yeast mixture and oil and on speed 2 knead the dough.
- Continue kneading for 2 minutes and check the dough.
- If it feels dry, add some warm water.
- If it feels sticky, add some flour.
- Continue kneading for a further 2-3 minutes on speed 2 till you get a smooth and pliable dough.
leavening brown bread dough
- Rub oil or water all over the dough and keep in a covered bowl to leaven for 2-3 hours.
- After 2-3 hours, remove the dough and punch and deflate it lightly.
- Roll a single log of the dough.
- Tuck the edges down on both sides of the bread loaf.
- Place the bread in a greased loaf pan (9x5 inches) with the tucked edges facing downwards.
- Cover the loaf pan and let the dough leaven for 40 minutes or 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees c/350 degrees f.
- Bake the loaf for 35-40 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped.
- Place the brown bread on a wire rack or tray.
- Serve warm or refrigerate the brown bread.
- If not baking on the same day, the leavened dough can be refrigerated.
- The leftover baked brown bread can be kept wrapped in a foil or cling film and refrigerated.
- This brown bread recipe can be doubled.
- The brown bread can also be baked in the convection mode of microwave oven at the same temperature mentioned in the recipe details.
- If the surface of the breads, starts to becoming brown whilst baking, then cover the surface of the bread, with aluminum foil or butter paper.