Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Honey Oat Bread

Ah, today was a long day!! Doctor's appointments and after-school classes, lack of sleep and leftover soreness. Because of the anxiety and procrastination of his mother, my poor little Joe is just now starting his immunizations. And he has to get them ALL done before school starts this fall!! Poor guy got SEVEN shots today!! It was pretty rough, but he bounced back fast, and is now very proud of himself. We were both pretty worn out after the appointment, and coming home to a slice of this bread, warmed and slathered in honey and butter, was the perfect medicine.


Honey Oat Bread (from Bakingdom)
Printable Recipe

3 cups all-purpose flour (you could use half or all whole wheat flour too!)
3/4 cups instant or old-fashioned oats
2 1/4 tsp yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk
1/4 cup lukewarm water
2 Tb unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey

a few Tb honey
a few Tb oats

Combine the flour, oats, yeast, and salt in a large bowl (or in mixer).

In a small glass bowl or measuring cup, warm the milk till it is hot enough to melt the butter, but not boiling. A minute and a half in the microwave did it for me. Add the butter and stir till melted. Stir in the water.
Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients, and mix with a dough hook or wooden spoon until it just comes together in a sticky dough. Knead by hand or in mixer for 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. (It will be VERY sticky at first. Be patient, spray your hand with cooking spray if kneading by hand, and try not to add more than a pinch or two of flour. It should start coming together and getting more tack and less sticky after about 5 minutes (it will start clearing the sides of the bowl if you're using a mixer. If it is still too soft, add flour a Tb at a time. Wait a while between each.)

Put dough in lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap or a clean towel. Let rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours, until doubled.

Once doubled, dump the dough out on a clean, dry work surface. Sprinkle a bit of flour if you need to. Flatten the dough into about a 9x12 inch rectangle with your hands. No need to use a rolling pin.
Starting from the short side, tightly roll the dough, tucking in the ends as needed, into a loaf. 
Place the rolled dough into a loaf pan, cover with a clean towel, let rise until doubled, another 1-2 hours. 
When ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place an empty loaf pan on the bottom rack of the oven and bring 2 cups of water to a boil on the stovetop.

Brush the top of the bread with honey (it helps to warm it up a bit) and sprinkle with extra oats. 
Place the bread in the oven (middle rack) and pour the boiling water into the empty loaf pan on the bottom rack of the oven. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until the bread is deep golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the crust.

Let cool slightly in the pan, then remove and cool completely on a wire rack. 
Isn't that golden-brown crust lovely? You could almost believe this bread is good for you! 
Well, it's certainly better for you than storebought bread full of preservatives! And it has oats in it, so that's saying something!
It slices up all light and soft and barely sweet. I have to be honest, this maybe my new favorite homemade bread. It is sooo good!
It just BEGS to be smeared with butter and drenched with honey... and hang the calories!!
I sliced the rest of it extra thin and can't wait to try it with sandwiches! Or toast! This bread is going to put a greater strain on my self control than every other treat I've made so far this week!

5 comments :

  1. i hope your little one is fully recovered - and yes a slice or two of that wonderful bread should put everyone right!
    Mary x

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  2. Hi,

    I'm a new reader of your blog, and I really enjoy it :) you've always got some great recipes!

    I am curious though because while I love baking bread, I've never heard of putting a pan of hot water in the oven while baking it. Is it just to keep it more moist?

    Also I made the chiken casserole from the last post and it turned out amazing! I put it on top of some pasta and that was quite delicious.

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    Replies
    1. Hello New Reader! Thank you so much for commenting! I'd never heard of putting water in there either, so I did some reading. Apparently the steam helps keep the top of the bread soft, so it rises higher! It also collects up there on the crust and helps get that gorgeous color. Thanks for asking!

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  3. Great answer to New Reader April! April, you are the bread baking Queen! I truly am in awe of you. I need to break out of my comfort zone and bake bread. I really do. I hope your little fella is completely recovered from having all his shots. So much at once. Poor guy. ((((hugs)))) to him. I haven't had a shot in years. I reckon I am most probably long overdue! Love you much. xxoo

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  4. I never made this style of bread but your recipe looks easy enough for me to try. Thanks so much for sharing this with Foodie Friends Friday.

    Hope to see you again soon,
    Joanne/Winelady Cooks

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