Honey Whole Wheat Bread

By Jeni Mann



1 cup milk
¾ cup butter
½ cup honey
2 teaspoons salt
¾ cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees)
2 packages active dry yeast
3 eggs, slightly beaten
4 ½ cups unsifted all purpose flour
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon soft butter

In a small saucepan, heat milk until bubbles form around edge of pan; remove from heat. Add ¾ cup butter, honey and salt, stirring until butter has melted. Let cool to lukewarm or tepid.

Sprinkle yeast over warm water in large bowl; stir until yeast is dissolved. Stir in milk mixture and the eggs. Combine all purpose and whole wheat flours. Add two-thirds of flour mixture to yeast mixture; then, with electric mixture at low speed, beat until blended. Then beat at medium speed until smooth— about 2 minutes. With wooden spoon, gradually beat in remaining flour mixture. Mix with hand, squeezing dough between fingers 20 to 30 times to develop gluten.

Cover the bowl with waxed paper and a clean tea towel. Let rise in warm place, free from drafts, until batter is above rim of bowl, 1 hour. Punch down dough, and beat it with a spoon until smooth, about 30 seconds. Lightly grease 2 loaf pans. Divide dough evenly into 2 pans. Cover, and let rise until double in bulk, 40 to 50 minutes. Dough should rise slightly above rims of baking pans.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until bread is browned and sounds hollow when rapped with a knuckle. Remove to wire rack. Rub 1 teaspoon softened butter over top. Makes 2 loaves.

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