A hearty, slightly sweet bread that's perfect for sandwiches or toasting. Prep and Cook Time: 4 hours.
Sunset APRIL 2008
1. In a medium bowl, combine cracked wheat, honey, salt, and 2 cups boiling water. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and let sit 30 minutes.
2. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in 3/4 cup warm water (90° to 105°). Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk whole-wheat flour and 2 cups bread flour together. Add cracked wheat and yeast mixtures.
4. Attach dough hook and, with mixer on low, mix to combine. Add remaining bread flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until dough pulls away from inside of bowl. Continue mixing until smooth and elastic, adding more flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking too much. When it's ready, the dough should feel a bit like an earlobe when you pinch it.
5. Butter a large bowl and put dough in it. Cover loosely and let sit until dough has doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Punch down dough, cover, and let double again, about 1 hour.
6. Divide dough in half and shape each half into a rough 8-in.-long rectangle. Butter two 8-in. loaf pans and put dough in pans. Cover and let sit until doubled in bulk, 30 to 45 minutes.
7. Preheat oven to 350°. Melt 2 tbsp. butter and brush onto tops of loaves. Using a razor or serrated knife, make a 1/4-in.-deep slash lengthwise on the top of each loaf and bake until browned, about 35 minutes. Remove loaves from pans (they're done if they sound hollow when tapped on the bottom) and cool on wire racks.
Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1/2-in. slice.
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