Wild Rice and Onion Bread, well almost!

Barley Bread

This bread made me think of a bread my father used to make and if he had been alive and active today, I’m sure he would have baked this one too, it is right up his street! He did a lot of cooking and baking, my father but in that way men do (at least the men of that generation but many later too because I have seen it in action all my life but that doesn’t mean every single man does it that way), big show, all prepared exactly according to concept and/or recipe (come to think of it, so far I have only seen men cook molecular gastronomy, you know doing it the scientific way with gases, liquid nitrogen etc. etc.) and a huge mess in the kitchen afterwards because let’s face it, men and women do cook in different ways, be it because of gender differences or for social/cultural reasons – there is usually a difference. Think about it. (And yes, I know I am generalizing here but this is how I perceive it after years and years of observations.)

But let’s get back to the bread, this month’s Bread Baking Babes bread was chosen by Karen of Bake My Day and it comes from Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day. The method employed hovers between a no-knead bread and a normal bread and it is really easy to make as long as you remember to make the dough the evening before you plan to bake it. What did I change? No wild rice here so I opted for barley and then I never been a fan of onion in bread so I added caraway seeds instead. For the rest I adhered to the recipe. And because I didn’t feel like meeting an re-enactment of The Blob in my fridge, I weighed the dough and divided it in two pieces that put in two large plastic containers before stacking them in my fridge over the night. The bread is fantastic, I cannot think my substitutions made such a difference to texture and the general flavour and I will definitely do it again with different grains and maybe with some whole-wheat flour too. Thanks Karen for this discovery!

You can of course bake this bread without being a Bread Baking Buddy but if you want a badge and be part of the roundup, please click over to Karen’s blog and get all the details.

Bake My Day – Karen
Bread Baking Babe Bibliothécaire – Katie
blog from OUR kitchen – Elizabeth
Feeding my enthusiasms – Elle
girlichef – Heather
Life’s A Feast – Jamie
Living in the Kitchen with Puppies – Natashya
My Kitchen In Half Cups – Tanna
Notitie Van Lien – Lien
My Diverse Kitchen – Aparna
Bread Experience – Cathy


Barley Bread-2

from Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day

6 cups (27 oz / 765 g) unbleached bread flour
2 1/4 teaspoons (0.6 oz / 17 g) salt, or 3 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
2 tablespoons (0.66 oz / 19 g) instant yeast
1 cup (6 oz / 170 g) cooked wild rice or another cooked grain
1/4 cup (2 oz / 56.5 g) brown sugar
11/2 cups (12 oz / 340 g) lukewarm water (about 95°F or 35°C)
1/2 cup (4 oz / 113 g) lukewarm buttermilk or any other milk (about 95°F or 35°C)
1/4 cup (1 oz / 28.5 g) minced or chopped dried onions, or 2 cups (8 oz / 227 g) diced fresh onion (about 1 large onion)
1 egg white, for egg wash (optional)
1 tablespoon water, for egg wash (optional)
Do Ahead
Combine all of the ingredients, except the egg wash, in a mixing bowl. If using a mixer, use the paddle attachment and mix on the lowest speed for 1 minute. If mixing by hand, use a large spoon and stir for 1 minute. The dough should be sticky, coarse, and shaggy. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes.

Switch to the dough hook and mix on medium-low speed, or continue mixing by hand, for 4 minutes, adjusting with flour or water as needed to keep the dough ball together. The dough should be soft, supple, and slightly sticky.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough for 2 to 3 minutes, adding more flour as needed to prevent sticking. The dough will still be soft and slightly sticky but will hold together to form a soft, supple ball. Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and immediately refrigerate overnight or for up to 4 days. (If you plan to bake the dough in batches over different days, you can portion the dough and place it into two or more oiled bowls at this stage.)
On Baking Day
Remove the dough from the refrigerator about 2 hours before you plan to bake. Shape the dough into one or more sandwich loaves, using 28 ounces (794 g) of dough for 4 1/2 by 8-inch loaf pans and 36 ounces (1.02 kg) of dough for 5 by 9-inch pans; into freestanding loaves of any size, which you can shape as bâtards, baguettes, or boules; or into rolls, using 2 ounces (56.5 g) of dough per roll. When shaping, use only as much flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking. For sandwich loaves, proof the dough in greased loaf pans. For freestanding loaves and rolls, line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat and proof the dough on the pan.

Mist the top of the dough with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise at room temperature for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until increased to about 1 1/2 times its original size. In loaf pans, the dough should dome at least 1 inch above the rim. If you’d like to make the rolls more shiny, whisk the egg white and water together, brush the tops of the rolls with the egg wash just before they’re ready to bake.

About 15 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C), or 300°F (149°C) for a convection oven.
Bake the loaves for 10 to 15 minutes, then rotate the pan; rotate rolls after 8 minutes. The total baking time is 45 to 55 minutes for loaves, and only 20 to 25 minutes for rolls. The bread is done when it has a rich golden color, the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom, and the internal temperature is above 185°F (85°C) in the center.
Cool on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes for rolls or 1 hour for loaves before slicing.