Thursday, January 26, 2012

Artisan Bread, With Wholewheat, Oats, Ragi and Flax Seed

First! A big thank you to Blogadda for making me Notable Newbie, and the warmest and sweetest welcome to all my new readers and hopefully, followers into my “baketitude”. Keep coming back and your comments are absolutely welcome.

An overdose of anything is bad, and we’ve had the mother of an overdose. Note, however that I do not attack any in-laws. Too much of sugar and some more sugar and then cream and mascarpone cheese. Our arteries must be crying out for help by now.
I thus decided to help mop up all the triglycerides from the aorta and the jugular. Enough of the biology (actually these are the only two arteries I can remember...) and back to food chemistry.

Ragi, is a humble grain or the poor man’s grain, also called the finger millet and generally eaten in the rural areas of Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra has suddenly been discovered. I discovered it too, when I discovered the pleasures of the rabri...err not Rabri Devi of the infamous Laloo Yadav, a simple gruel to start the day. Rabri is porridge like gruel of maize, barley or for that matter any grain, coarsely ground, cooked and then cooked with yogurt and lightly flavoured with salt and chopped onions. This powerhouse of nutrients is usually had for breakfast, fuels you with the iron and calcium, fibre and calorie requirement for the day adding almost a minute amount of fat to your system. Keeps you cool (raw onions are scientifically proven to keep your body temp regulated in the desert areas) and strong.

Well this grain may not be the prettiest to look at, but when you weigh its benifits, even George Bernard Shaw would have married it. For those of you who know about the incident where a beautiful lady proposed marriage to the comparatively uglier G B Shaw ,stating that their off spring would be beautiful and intelligent and he turned her down on the fear of the off sprig turning out as beautiful as himself and as intelligent(sic) as the lady! Smirk!
The Chocolate Soldier was my favourite play for the longest time.

Anyways back to the bread. Oats, also traditionally food for horses...we don’t say As Strong as a Horse for no reason. And the wonder seed Flax!

Substitute for fish oil, substitute for eggs, wonderfully nutty mean I could wax eloquent about them the whole day. If you don’t believe me, wiki for all the facts. I’m educated by tithe Prevention magazine.
Te basic idea was to make soup out of the packet, and this bread, was to mop it all up.
Basic bread recipe, to which some additions and subtractions were made and then with a whole lot of prayers, it was sliced and placed on the table. It may not be the prettiest, but sweet child dunked it in the soup and hardly realised the actual taste. So a word of warning, not exactly what your baby might love, but, I promise you, your body will thank you for it.
Do something for yourself once in a while.

Wow! What an intro!

For the

Artisan Bread, With Wholewheat, Oats, Ragi and Flax Seeds...

You need

2 cups whole wheat flour or Atta
½ cup finger millet or ragi/nachni/mandua flour (depending on the region you procure it from)
½ cup rolled oats
1 ½ tsp dried yeast
2 tbsp molasses (I used Khajur gur-Jaggery)
½ cup ground flaxseed
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil or any refined oil will do
2 tsp milk or a solution of sugar and water will do if you are vegan
Warm water to knead the dough
2 tsp each rolled oats, flax seeds and sesame seeds for sprinkling

You’ll have to knead this with your hands, no food processor shortcut for this one.
Into the bowl with the flax seeds powder, the rolled oats and the ragi flour.

The whole wheat flour.

Grate the jaggery into the bowl. If you have molasses use that, otherwise even this will do. In fact jaggery raises the iron quotient in the bread even more.

Use one teaspoon of the jaggery and blend it with some warm water and to this add the yeast. Let it bubble up. 

Once it is activated then add it to the flours. Mix this in and add half the oil and the salt. Knead for five to six minutes with warm water.

Exercise for the wrists...ever wonder why dough kneaders have the softest hands??
Now final couple of kneading minutes with the remaining oil.

Place it in a greased loaf tin. If you don’t have a loaf tin, make balls and make rolls or just make a free standing baguette. But a bread from a loaf tin just looks so formal. Actually this one needs to be sliced and cannot be torn. A baguette is good for a loaf that can be torn.

Brush the top of the loaf with the milk and on this sprinkle the rolled oats, the flax seeds and the sesame seeds.

Cover and keep in a warm place till it doubles in volume.

Turn your oven on to 220C/430F.Into the oven for 35-40 minutes.
You know the test for done bread, don’t you? Turn it around and tap its backside. Hollow sound means it’s ready to go.

Turn it out of the pan and if you’ve times it right, open the soup tin or just make the soup and cut thick slices of the bread and sit down for dinner. I made it in the afternoon,so I wrapped the loaf in film,keeping  it soft. 

The additives in the soup disguise its slightly different taste, if it tastes a little alien to you, try cheese spread or maybe a wee bit of butter.

The goodness of this bread will warm your tummy even more than the supposedly “yummy” soup. So mummy is happily on her way to becoming a yummier Mummy!See the texture...

I know you are a yummy mummy already.
 P.S. Just in case you don’t know, try biting and chewing the flax seeds, as the stomach is unable to digest them unless you do. That why flax seed meal is better than whole flax seeds. You might as well try and gain the maximum mileage out of the tiny wonders.
Start a Good Diet! Eat Healthy!

Next post will be a sweeter one...already hearing the moans and groans from sweet child.....”Where’s the pudding???”
Also coming up soon ...Key Lime Pie-Eggless to top it all!

So what are you baking today???


Kalpana Sareesh said...

Beautifully baked healthy bread.. Love to try it soon..

sweet said...

kalpana...welcome to baketitude...thanx for stopping by and let me know when u make it...cheers!

Anonymous said...

Hi Sweet,

Bread looks awesome! However, i Can't have wheat/gluten grains. Can you replace whole wheat with a non-wheat flour/grain?? Any suggestions since gluten will be missing-do u think its possible?


Sweet said...

Hi as far as I know...ragi is completely gluten free....and Oats are gluten free but they are often milled on production lines which also handle gluten containing cereals like barley, malt or wheat.So you need certified gluten free oats...and wheat...has a lot of gluten. You need to subs that...may be if you omit wheat and up increase the quantity of the yeast...
to try...

Until the next

Until the next


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