Hello all! Well, winter has finally set in and has kicked me into baking and cooking gear! So, I finally had a chance to document the stages of sprouting and baking my sprouted wheat bread. This bread is SOO good, but it took some practice and I didn’t have a very good recipe or guide to begin with. There are SO many benefits of sprouting grains (click link for more info) as I have spoke of before. The kids LOVE this bread, but let me say, it is a sweeter bread and not a sandwich bread. It is more for soups or just a great snack with almond butter on it, etc. However you an back off on the sweetness and add a touch more salt perhaps for a more savory bread. I will be changing it up soon. I would love to add cinnamon and raisins and see how that turns out next time. I have done this so many times and finally got it figured out. The first time, as many complained from the original blog I found it on, the bread was hard as a brick and burnt. SO, after MUCH experimentation I have it down to a science I do believe. So, here goes: (pictured below… the Final Product! YUM)
Ingredients: 1 cup hard wheat berries, about 1/4- 1/2 cup Agave light (or honey) and a dash of salt to your likeing. That is IT! You will need a crock pot for cooking it.
First, you must rinse 1 cup of hard white wheat berries (there are many kinds, you just need to figure out what flavor you like), and then soak them over night. I leave the water about 1 inch above the berries. You will have some floaties, so just discard. Cover with dish towel to set overnight and drain them in the morning. Rinse them again. You will see them start to have a little white “tail” poking out. That means they have sprouted. You could certainly start your bread now, but we like it sweet, so the longer the “tail” the sweeter the bread. Pictured below is how I like mine to look. You need to rinse about 3-4 times throughout the day and drain and cover and let sit with the towel over it. Depending on how warm it is in the house is how quick they seem to sprout. But, usually I have to wait one more night until they are sprouted well.
Close up of the sprouted berry. See the “tail” 😉
Then you put all the berries into a food processor. Now, here is the part that can vary… if you like a moister bread, you can rinse the berries one more time and drain them well, but keep them a little moist (Please note that when you take it out it will be very sticky on your hands and mushy, but it will be ok). If you like your bread a little firmer and nuttier, then do not rinse them before you put into the processor. Make sure they are dry. I like it both ways. It tends to cook a little quicker without the added moisture.
Then I simply add the Agave, sorry I do not measure exactly. I usually just semi-moderately pour it in one full circle. Then add a few turns of the Sea Salt mill. Then you go ahead and let it rip! You will have to stop it a few times and scrape the sides down. Then something super cool happens if you don’t rinse the berries one last time before…. A ball of “batter” will form all on its own. Just take it out, scrape the extras and add to the ball. Form into a round, semi-flat loaf. It will not be too big either, but this loaf feeds my three kids and me for at least one meal if not an added snack for one or two of us….
Picture above isn’t a perfect ball because I rinsed the berries this time for a softer bread. So it looks a little more mushy.
The trick to not burning the bottom is to do what I picture below. You need to make a barricade between the batter and the small crock dish you put the batter in. So, I take a small glass lid and turn it upside down in the large crock pot. Then, I make a “rack” on the bottom of the small ceramic dish I am putting it in with foil. I have yet do find a wire rack this small, so if anyone knows, please share! Just roll foil up the length of your dish. Then I spray it all with Pam. And, you are ready to go!
Put the ceramic dish on top of the lid you placed on the bottom of the crock pot. Do not cover the dish in the crock pot, just put the crock pot lid on. Our Crock pot has 4 settings. I put it on the second to lowest; 8 hour low I believe. The batter that is drier cooks for about 4 hours and the moister bread might cook for one or two more depending. You need to keep checking it. The outsides will be harder to the touch, but they soften up after you wrap it when you store it. When you touch the center it will be softer, but firm. It will be a nice golden brown too. Let it cool on a rack or a towel, and yummy bread awaits.
This bread doesn’t rise obviously, so the shape you form is the shape it will be in….
I really hope you enjoy this bread. It may take a couple times to figure out your crock pot, but just don’t over cook it because I am telling you it WILL be hard as a brick. HA! It will smell so yummy when it is ready too. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! This bread is not hard at all to make, it just takes waiting around! 😉 But the end product is SO worth it in my opinion!
Have a blessed day!