This whole wheat honey bread is a ‘brown bread’ that even kids may enjoy. There’s just enough honey to give it a hint of sweetness, but not so much that you feel like you’re eating cake. That’s my problem with many supermarket breads, whether white or whole wheat.
I enjoy this bread for breakfast with scrambled eggs on top, or as a sandwich with ham, cheese and tomato. It’s also delicious toasted with butter and jam.
Storage and Reheating
As with most homemade bread, this will go stale within a few days at room temperature. Don’t be tempted to refrigerate either; this prevents mold but tends to dry out the bread faster. If it won’t be eaten in a day or two, I suggest slicing it once it’s cooled and storing in the freezer. When you want some bread, you can quickly reheat by toasting it or microwaving for about 30 seconds between two paper towels.
How to Make Whole Wheat Honey Bread
For more detailed information on general bread making steps, please see my recipe for Basic White Sandwich Bread.
Mix Warm Water and Yeast
In a small bowl, add the warm water and yeast and stir. You won’t see much of a reaction here aside from the yeast dissolving as there’s no sugar in the mixture. If you aren’t sure how fresh your yeast is, go ahead and add a teaspoon of sugar to the water, sprinkle the yeast on top and leave for about 10 minutes until starting to foam. That means your yeast is ready and you can move on with the rest of the recipe as written.
Mix Hot Water, Butter and Honey
Add the hot water to a medium bowl with the honey and butter. It’s easiest to measure the honey if you lightly grease the measuring spoons first, as it will then slide right out. Stir the mixture until the butter melts. The water should also cool a little so that it’s at more of a ‘yeast-friendly’ temperature.
Combine Wet Ingredients with Flour and Salt
In a large bowl, mix together the whole wheat flour, the white bread flour and the salt. Then pour in the yeast mixture and the honey and butter mixture and stir until a dough starts to form.
Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. If you find the dough is very wet and sticky, add a little more flour until it’s more manageable. This dough should be a little sticky, however, so keep that in mind.
Now set the dough in a large, lightly oiled bowl and turn to coat all over. Cover and leave to rise until doubled in size. This may take an hour or a bit more, depending on the conditions in your kitchen.
Grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf tin. Then lightly press down on the dough to get out any large air bubbles, and shape into a loaf. I do this by pushing the dough out into a square about the same length as the loaf tin, and then rolling it up. This gives me a rough loaf shape that fits in the tin.
Put the shaped dough in the loaf tin and cover, then leave to rise until nearly doubled in size. This usually takes less time than the first rise, so it might be up to an hour or maybe only 45 minutes if it’s a warm day.
Make sure you preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit or 200 degrees Celsius about 15 minutes before the end of the rising time. Then, when the bread is ready, bake for about 35-40 minutes. When done, the bread should be golden brown and, if you tap the bottom of the loaf, it should sound hollow.
Try to let the bread cool before you slice it. I know this can seem difficult, but the bread will be at its best texture-wise if you wait. I can personally say that it does still taste good if you slice it warm though; it’s just a bit squishier inside.
Whole Wheat Honey Bread
- 60 ml warm water
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 300 ml hot (not boiling) water
- 4 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons butter cut into cubes
- 255 g whole wheat flour
- 320 g white bread flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- oil for greasing
- In a small bowl, mix the 60 ml warm water and yeast.
- In a medium bowl, add the 300 ml hot water, honey, and butter, and stir until butter is melted.
- In a large bowl, add both flours and the salt and stir. Add the yeast mixture and the honey/butter mixture and mix until a dough starts to form. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
- Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and turn to coat all over. Cover and leave to rise until doubled in size, which will take about an hour, maybe a little more.
- Lightly grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf tin.
- Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently push down, just to get out any large air bubbles. Form the dough into a square shape about the same length as the loaf tin, then roll up so you have a loaf that fits nicely in your tin. Place the shaped dough, seam side down, in the loaf tin. Cover and leave in a warm place for about an hour, or until dough has nearly doubled in size.
- Towards the end of the rising time, start preheating the oven to 375°F (200°C).
- Bake the bread for 35-40 minutes, or until golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. When bread has finished baking, turn out onto a wire rack and let cool before cutting.
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