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Who am I? Wife. Mother of 2. "Newbie" to fitness. Personal Trainer-in-training. Lover of health. Fitness. Religion. Family. Gluten and refined sugar intolerant. Welcome to my journey. Learn with me.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Quick & Crusty Whole Wheat Baguettes

I always love the idea of quick breads. I don't often have time to wait for rolls that take hours and hours to rise and so when I come across a recipe for quick breads I am always intrigued.

This baguette recipe is supposed to come together in 30 minutes with only 5 ingredients - that is pretty amazing. Of course, I always like to make things healthier when I can so I made a few changes to get more health benefits out of this yummy recipe.

Now, you have to remember, wheat has a different texture than white bread. My baguettes came out soft and chewy and delicious. Myself and my children loved them (my husband would probably as well but he is at work...) But don't expect them to be quite as soft and airy as white bread. Wheat makes these filling and hearty and a lot better for you.

Also, using wheat will give the baguettes the classic "nutty" wheat taste. Delicious.

I state this in the recipe but I want to be extra clear - I don't think you should try to do these in just 30 minutes. The only rising step in the entire recipe is "optional" but a lot of the reviewers have cautioned against skipping it. I let mine rise for 30 minutes while I taught an early morning piano lesson. Super easy.

This recipe is adapted from The Family Kitchen. The original recipe can be found at this site here: http://blogs.babble.com/family-kitchen/2011/02/21/crusty-baguettes-made-fresh-in-30-minutes/

Quick & Crusty whole wheat French Baguettes
Adapted from The Family Kitchen

Servings about 22 pieces
Nutritional Information per serving (calculated on MyFitnessPal.com): Calories 70, Carbs 15, Fat grams <0.37, Protein 3 (Calculated based on 2 tbsp honey and whole wheat flour)

  • 2 cups very warm water
  • 1 packet yeast (2 ¼ tsp equivalent)
  • 2 tablespoons honey (I used 1 Tbsp + ½ Tbsp Stevia)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 cups flour (I ONLY used whole wheat)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  In a large bowl, whisk together the warm water, yeast, and sugar.  Set the bowl on top of your preheating oven (or a warm heating pad) for ten minutes.  Stir in the salt and add the flour a half-cup at a time, until the dough becomes soft but not sticky.  Knead the dough until elastic. (about 3-5 minutes)

Cut the dough into four even pieces.  Roll each of them into four long, thin ropes.  Twist together two of the ropes to form one loaf.  Twist the other two ropes together to form a second loaf.  Transfer both onto a large baking sheet.

You can now bake the loaf right away (if you’re in a hurry) or allow it to rise for an additional 15-30 minutes on top of your warm oven. When you are using whole wheat flour you will NOT want to skip this step. I let my loaves rise for 30 minutes on my warm heating pad.)

Now for the SECRET: Fill a cake pan with 3-4 cups of ice.  Open your hot oven and place the baking sheet with the baguettes inside, then the cake pan as close as you can to the bottom heating coils.  Do NOT open your oven for 15 minutes.  Bake until golden brown, about 15-18 minutes. (The original recipe states that you should throw the ice directly on the bottom of your oven; however this can cause your oven to warp after a while so if you go this route be warned!)

*Hint on Whole Wheat – You might panic after the 15 minutes that your loaves are overdone because of the color. Whole wheat SHOULD be a darker brown. If you want the crusty outside make sure to watch it carefully but don’t pull it out too soon.

Serve fresh and hot with your favorite olive oil for dipping.

1 comment:

Lori Kessler said...

This recipe came out absolutely amazing for me. I was nervous about a 100% whole wheat bread because I've read all over the place that they're finicky and come out too dense, but this was lovely on the first try.

I used all whole wheat flour (I think it ended up about 3-1/2 cups), all honey, and a 30-minute rise. It came out gorgeous, delicious, healthy, and way quicker than my other bread recipes. Score!