Bread Machine Wholemeal Bread
Having a bread machine makes baking bread so easy. I have a Russell Hobbs bread maker and it is truely the workhorse of my kitchen. I make a small loaf every other day, and whilst I vary the types of flours and seeds I use, my loaves are always wholegrain. This recipe is for my bread machine wholemeal bread: my most basic loaf.
The ingredients list is short for my wholemeal bread recipe: wholemeal bread flour, vital wheat gluten, yeast and a small amount of salt. I add seeds too for flavour but you don’t have to. Unlike other wholemeal bread recipes this contains no white flour, sugar, ascorbic acid, milk powder or oil. Over the years I have discovered that these ingredients are completely unnecessary.
I use shelled hemp seeds in my bread machine wholemeal bread recipe. They add flavour and healthy fats to the bread. As an alternative, roasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds are very tasty. For details on how to roast seeds see here.
A good rise
You will probably have picked up on the fact that I use vital wheat gluten in my bread. Vital wheat gluten is produced by purifying the protein (gluten) from wheat: it is not a whole food. Gluten makes the bread dough more stretchy, and this means that the yeast can pump more air into the dough without it collapsing. Hence more gluten equals a better rise and a lighter loaf. Vital wheat gluten is not strictly necessary in this recipe: if you want to leave it out you need to replace it with wholemeal flour. The bread won’t rise as well but it will still be nice. However I don’t consider vital wheat gluten an unhealthy ingredient. If anything it adds more plant based protein to your diet!
Another tip for getting a good rise is to use the right wholemeal flour. I have discovered that Waitrose make the best bread flour: I use their Canadian wholemeal bread flour. I am not being paid by Waitrose but I honestly wouldn’t use any other type of bread flour. On the occasions when I have, my bread has been nowhere near as good.
Storing your bread
Once you have made your bread, allow it to cool completely. To store, wrap in plastic: a plastic carrier bag works perfectly well, though the best bags to use are the ones that breakfast cereal comes in (that’s a tip from my mum). Store in a cool dry place, or in the fridge.
Free from: nuts, soya
This is a vegan recipe
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- 35 g vital wheat gluten
- 265 g very strong wholemeal bread flour
- 2 heaped tbsp shelled hemp seeds (optional)
- 225 mL water
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp bread machine yeast
Put a bowl or large jug on your kitchen scales, and set to 0g. Add a heaped tablespoonful of vital wheat gluten (about 35g), then add the wholemeal flour until you have 300g in total.
Add the shelled hemp seeds and stir the dry ingredients together.
Add the water to the bread machine pan, then add the salt.
Next tip in the dry ingredients. Spread the dry ingredients out so that they cover the water.
Add the yeast on top of the dry ingredients.
Use a 500g wholemeal loaf programme. I select a light coloured crust. Using my Russell Hobbs machine this translates to a small wholemeal loaf, light crust.