Is there anything that smells better than fresh baked bread? It's why we love places like Subway, right? Homemade bread smells like comfort and when it's done right, tastes like it, too.
When we changed our diet and eliminated eggs and dairy, I was only able to find a few bread loaves at the store that didn't have milk as a key ingredient. And given that my son has a legit allergy to cow's milk, I was on a mission to figure it out.
Of course, Ezekiel bread is one of our favorites, but my kids aren't really fans. So I was buying sandwich bread for them that was suitable. But over time, the loaves started getting smaller while the price suddenly broke the $3 a loaf mark! Given that I bought 2 loaves at a time and we went through it so fast, I was determined to find a more cost effective, healthier option.
And that meant baking my own. The problem was, most bread recipes call for whole milk or milk powder so I was at a loss how to make it work. But with the help of a Google search bar, I pressed on.
Armed with a borrowed bread-maker to see if I even liked doing it, I set out to make my own wholesome bread without the milk. I'm happy to tell you that I succeeded!
So I gave my friend her bread-maker back and instead of buying my own, I turned to the Facebook for help. I simply put up a post one day that basically said, "hey friends, if anyone has a bread-maker collecting dust, I'll be happy to buy it from you!" But nobody bit.
A couple of days later, we were at a friend's house for small group and I mentioned my post to the group and how surprised I was that nobody responded. As it turned out, the host actually had one literally collecting dust up in a cabinet. Before we left that night, he pulled it down and sent me home with it!
It took me a few tries, but soon enough, I perfected my vegan bread recipe using my new gift.
I have baked this bread so many times I can do it by heart. I don't even have to look at the recipe anymore. It's that ingrained in me. (haha...see what I did there?)
My kids love this bread. In fact, I prefer making it over the store baught stuff, mainly because it keeps them fuller longer! Definitely a plus in my book!
And I'm happy to share it with you!
Break-maker Stone Ground Whole Wheat Bread (Vegan)
300 mls (1 1/4 + 1T) water, room temp
1 tablespoon vegan butter
1/2 tablespoon* sea salt
1/2 tablespoon* vital wheat gluten
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
3 1/4 cups stone ground whole wheat flour
1/2 tablespoon active fast rising bread maker yeast
1. Add 1/4 cup nutritional yeast to flour
2. Replace brown sugar with 2 T honey and 1 T molasses
*Note: 1/2 tablespoon = 1 1/2 teaspoons
1. In clean bread basket, add all ingredients in order through brown sugar.
2. Add flour one cup at a time to top of water mixture. DO NOT MIX.
TIP: When measuring flour, use a spoon to add flour to cup measure instead of dipping the cup measure in flour.
3. Make sure flour covers water entirely and push into corners of bread basket. Make a small well in the center of flour for the yeast. Add yeast.
4. Place bread basket firmly in place in the bread maker.
5. Use following settings for bread maker (I have a Kenmore):
1.5 lbs loaf, medium crust, rapid whole wheat (2:40) or whole wheat (4:30). Press start.
6. When finished, turn bread out onto cooling rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes before slicing. (Unless you can't stand it and have to have a slice of fresh warm bread!)
7. Store in zip top bag in airtight container on counter or in refrigerator up to 7 days.
Slice as needed and enjoy! I usually yield about 16 slices so I make this twice a week for kid lunches.