Whole Wheat Bread with Agave Nectar
I was hungry for some good homemade wheat bread despite not having bread pans. This recipe is probably better in traditional pans, but it worked out just fine as braided loaves baked on cookie sheets. The entire family, bar none, loved this bread, so I am happy to share it with everyone.
Dissolve 2 packets yeast in warm water – set aside (1/4 C. water)
Put 1/4 C. vegan butter spread (oil may be substituted), 2 C. hot water, 1/2 C. agave nectar, and 1 tsp salt in large bow. Allow to cool until spread is dissolved and water is lukewarm. Then add the yeast mixture.
Add 3 C. whole wheat flour and beat with a wooden spoon, one cup at a time, until mixture is well blended.
Have 2 C. unbleached flour ready. Prepare cutting board by sprinkling generously with unbleached flour. Add in the 2 C. flour and blend well. Pour (it will be solid) out the dough onto the board. Begin kneading until all the flour is blended, adding more periodically until the dough is not sticky. Knead for about five minutes and set aside in warm place (not hot), covered with towel or plastic wrap.
Check back in 30-45 minutes. Once the bread has doubled in size, you will punch it down, knead it a few times, and form it into whatever shape you wish. Try dividing dough into half, then each half into thirds. Make each third into a long snake-like shape and braid three together, tucking ends underneath. Allow bread to rise again for 30 min.
Bake bread at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes. Allow to cool on racks. Serve warm or cool with vegan buttery spread or oil; or serve it with a good hearty soup.
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