This recipe came to me from one of my favorite students. She was having trouble getting this dough to rise up fully during the final rise. The problem was purely aesthetics, because the flavor was delicious and well received by everyone she fed it to. So I told her I would take a look at it and see if I could help resolve the problem. I believed the bread was struggling to rise due to the high proportion of seeds and whole wheat flour to bread flour.
I tried the recipe first just as she sent it to me, and like she said to me in class it was really tasty due to all those nutty seeds and sweet oats, but it was a little flat in shape. So, I gave it another try this time with more whole wheat flour instead of bread flour. Whole wheat flour absorbs more moisture so I thought it might make the dough a little less sticky when kneading. I also made sure to knead it longer so that it really passed a windowpane test. This would make sure that it had enough strength to lift all those heavy seeds. This loaf came out better. It rose a bit higher, but it still wasn’t as high as I wanted. The final attempt I resorted to adding a bit of vital wheat gluten. I am not usually one to add in dough conditioners but this time more strength was required. I chose to start with really the bare minimum and see what the results looked like. I think the two loaves came out great. They rose beautifully and their interior crumb was a bit stronger. You can probably use up to a tablespoon of vital wheat gluten before your final bread would become chewy.
- 2 ½ cups boiling water
- 1 cup ( 3.15 oz) regular oats
- 1 TB instant yeast
- ½ cup honey
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 TB canola oil or vegetable oil
- 3 cups (13.75 oz) unbleached bread flour
- 2 cups (8.3 oz) whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour
- 1 cup (6.5 oz) cooked millet
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds
- ½ cup sunflower seeds
- 1 tsp vital wheat gluten (optional â€“ but loaf will be more dense without it)
- Cook millet according to package directions. I cook it in a three to one ratio. Three parts water to one part millet. Allow cooked millet to cool to room temperature.
- Pour boiling water over oats and set aside to soak and cool for 1 hour.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl combine the cooled oats, millet, yeast, honey, salt, oil, and flour. Stir until no dry flour remains. Allow to rest for 10 minutes to allow the flour to hydrate, then knead by mixer or hand until the dough comes easily away from the sides of the bowl and is smooth and elastic. The dough will still be rather sticky, but it will pass the windowpane test. Add your seeds and knead into the dough until evenly distributed.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise at room temperature for about an hour. Or until doubled in bulk.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and divide into two equal pieces. Shape the pieces into loaves and place them in greased loaf pans. Cover the pans with greased plastic wrap and allow to rise at room temperature until the tops of the loaves have risen over the edge of the pans by about an one and a half inches. This will take between 45 minutes and an hour depending on your room temperature.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees with the rack positioned in the middle of the oven.
- Bake the risen loaves for 40-50 minutes or until they are deep brown and have a hollow sound when tapped on the bottom.