1 cup milk, scalded and then cooled to lukewarm
1/3 cup honey
1 package active dry yeast (1 tablespoon)
1 cup lukewarm water
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup mixed grains of choice, such as Stone-buhr 4 Grain Cereal Mates
About 3 cups all-purpose flour
In large bowl, mix milk and honey. In small bowl, stir yeast in lukewarm water; let dissolve 3 to 5 minutes, then add to milk/honey mixture. Add flour and, with whisk or wooden spoon, whip for 100 strokes. Cover bowl with towel and let stand 45 to 60 minutes.
To yeast mixture in large bowl, add salt, oil, grains and 2-1/2 cups of the flour. Mix with wooden spoon, then fold by hand gradually until dough holds together and begins to come cleanly off sides of bowl.
Flour hands and begin kneading dough on lightly floured board or countertop until dough feels springy (consistency of an ear lobe). Add more flour a little at a time, if needed -- and only enough to prevent dough from sticking to hands. (It's better to be a little on the sticky side than too dry with too much flour.)
Place in large, clean and oiled bowl. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled in size.
Punch down dough, knead, then return it to bowl. Cover and let rise again; this time it will double in size more quickly.
Punch down dough, knead and divide it into 4 equal portions. Shape into large buns (mini-loaves), flouring hands if dough gets too sticky. Place 2 buns each on 2 lightly greased cookie sheets, allowing 4 inches between buns; let rise until almost doubled in size.
Bake 35 minutes in a preheated 375-degree oven. Makes 4 crusty buns, each 8 inches or larger in diameter.
Or make 3 loaves, each 5 by 9 inches; or 4 loaves, each 3 by 7 inches. If desired, sprinkle some grains on top of loaves before baking.
Store in plastic bag as soon as bread cools. Freeze portion you don't plan to use within 2 days.
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