Breadmakers are great for making multi seed wholemeal bread! People say it’s cheating. I say “so when did you last make a loaf of bread by hand”? Usually the answer is several years ago! Making high quality nutritious wholemeal bread is so easy in a bread machine, I do it several times a week! I rest my case! Purists don’t actually practice what they preach when it comes down to it. Sure kneading bread is therapeutic – but will you do it, and do you have the time? Usually the answer is a big no, so be pragmatic and use a bread machine. The plusses are: it’s really cheap, you know what’s in it, and you can use wholemeal flour and loads of seeds. In addition, it will pay for itself in about 6 months if you do 2 loaves a week.
I reckon the set up time for a loaf of wholemeal bread is under 2 minutes – and I have the video to prove it! If you make it with multi seeds it’s around 3 minutes. You can set it to run the night before and it’s ready in the morning. Plus you wake up to the smell of freshly baked bread.
There are a couple of tricks though. Either use bottled water, spring water, filtered water or boil your water well before using. The big issue is the cholorine – it inhibits the yeast and the bread doesn’t rise properly. Also make sure your yeast is not too old. The best cure for that is to make bread regularly. Make sure you use yeast specially formulated for bread makers – the regular sort doesn’t work at all.
I think the panasonic bread maker is generally the best on the market. I’ve had them for years and they’re very reliable. That said they tend to major on the rubbish white bread in the booklet, and just have a small selection of wholemeal bread recipes.
Always add the yeast and sugar and salt in first, then add in the flour and fat. Bang or tap the breadpan down on a solid surface to seal the edges of the flour. This is so that the water doesn’t seep down to the flour until the machine starts up. I find that olive oil doesn’t work very well, but vegan maragarine does. Then, hold a spoon just above the flour and pour the water onto it from a jug. By adding the water in this way, it doesn’t disturb the flour. This is because you don’t want the yeast to start working until the machine is ready to make the bread.
Lastly weigh the seeds into the seed & nut dispenser, and set the delay timer for the morning. Press go on the machine, and several hours later you will have a delicious nutritious loaf of organic wholemeal bread.
I buy my flour from Doves Farm. I reckon a loaf of plain organic wholemeal costs me 95p. With multi seed wholemeal bread it’s a bit more but not much more. You could easily pay £3.75 for a loaf of organic wholemeal bread from an artizan baker.
Multi-seed Organic Wholemeal Bread
- 1 breadmaking machine
- 1 set of scales
- 1 measuring spoon
- 1 table spoon
- 2 tbsps brown sugar
- 1.25 teasps breadmaker yeast This is important - ordinary active yeast won't work - it has to be specifically for breadmakers.
- 9 g low sodium salt you can use ordinary, but low salt is best for your overal salt/sodium intake.
- 600 g Organic wholemeal flour
- 35 g margarine you can use rapeseed or olive oil, but it doesn't rise quite so well.
- 415 g filtered, bottled or well boiled tap water the clorine in tap water inhibits the yeast
- 65 g multi-seed mix and omega 3 rich one is healthiest
- Put the yeast in the breadmaker pan - 1 1/4 teasps
- Put the sugar in the breadmaker pan - 2 tbsps
- weigh in the salt directly to the breadmaker pan - 9g
- weigh in the flour directly into the breadmaker pan - 600g
- shake the breadmaker pan gently side to side to level the flour
- tap the breadmaker pan gently on a hard surface to settle the flour and seal it around the edges. This is to stop the water seeping down the sides and wetting the yeast and making it start working prematurely.
- zero the scales, and then with a tablespoon held just above the surface of the flour, pour the water onto the spoon. This deflects it and stops it penetrating the flour and wetting the yeast. 415g
- Place the breadmaker pan in the machine.
- remove the seed/nut dispenser and place on the scales. Make sure the trap door is properly closed.
- weigh in a seed mix (or your own version). 65g
- Place the dispenser carefully back in it's slot/holder.
- Select the correct program - on my SD it's #9 but it will be different on different breadmakers.
- Set any time delay if you're doing it overnight to be ready in the morning.
- Set an alarm to make sure you take the bread out when it's ready - it ruins the crust if you leave it in the machine too long.
- Place on a wire rack to cool completely.
- I find the best way to avoid waste is to let it cool thoroughly, and then to slice it with my Graef kitchen slicer and freeze it. That way, you can just take as many slices as you need and toast them.