Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin Bread Recipe
Way back in 1968, our little 4 room school house grew so big that we needed to move the 7th and 8th grade classes to the church basement. We we privileged to have an amazing teacher that felt we needed to raise money for the school and at the same time, grow proficient in baking bread. With those two goals in mind, she had us bake bread to sell. Thus began my love of baking bread. There have been few weeks in these 47 years of bread baking, when my hands have not kneaded bread dough ! No matter how many new recipes I try, I come back to two. One is this Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin bread that I came up with many years ago. Its a combination of two recipes we used way back in that church basement kitchen. And the other, is a delightfully simple Amish White Bread recipe that is delicious and yet so very simple.
I know lots of folks love their bread machines, but not me. Don't own one and don't want one. I like how it keeps my hands strong and I long ago adopted the habit of praying for my children the entire kneading process and that has proved to be of great value through the years.
Here is the recipe. Makes two loaves.
Mrs Lockwood's Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin Bread
1/2 cup lukewarm water
2 Tablespoons dry yeast
4 T honey
put these ingredients together in a bowl and let set until bubbly
add to that
4 T oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup raisins
1 cup white flour
1 cup oatmeal ( I use quick oats but old fashioned oats work fine too)
5 cups give or take of whole wheat flour, added a cup at a time, to make sure you get the right amount.
I usually save 1 cup of flour to be added as I knead the bread, added as needed on the counter to keep the bread dough from sticking.
Knead about 5 minutes or until you are done praying for your family.
Shape into a round ball and put in lightly greased bowl to raise, cover with clean damp cloth and let raise until double in size, about half an hour
preheat oven to 350 F punch down dough, let it rest for a few minutes, usually this is done while I grease the bread pans. Shape into loaves and put in pans, let raise another half hour or so and then bake for 45-50 minutes until browned nicely. Thump to test that its done. Butter the tops when you take it out of the oven cool 5 minutes before removing from the pans and you are done !