This delicious bread is high in flavor, texture and fiber. It’s packed with water soluble fiber from oat-bran and linseed (flax), and insoluble fiber from wheat bran. The linseed (flax) brings the additional benefit of omega-3 fatty acids.
Although it sounds like this bread should taste like cardboard, it really doesn’t. It’s moist and delicious. I love it with thin shavings of mature (sharp) cheese, a wisp of ham or lashings of butter.
OAT BRAN BREAD
Makes one 13 x 28cm (5 x 11 inch) loaf
Adapted from “Whole Grain Breads – New Techniques, Extraordinary Flavor”, by Peter Reinhart
For the soaker
- 185 g (1 c and 4 T) wholemeal (whole wheat flour)
- 4 T oat bran
- 1 ½ T linseed (flax seeds)
- ¼ t salt
- 200 ml (¾ c and 4 t) water
For the biga
- 225 g (1 ½ c) wholemeal (whole wheat) flour
- ½ t dried active baking yeast
- 170 ml (⅔ c and 2 t) filtered water, at room temperature
For the final dough
- All soaker
- All biga
- 75 g (½ c) wholemeal (whole wheat) flour
- 1 big pinch salt
- 2 ½ t dried active baking yeast
- 2 ½ T honey
- 1 T olive oil
Extra flour for adjustments
1. Soaker – Place all ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook attachment. Mix together using low speed for 2-4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, cover with cling film (plastic wrap) and leave at room temperature for 12-24 hours (or chill for up to 3 days).
2. Biga – Place all ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook attachment. Mix, using low speed until a tacky dough is formed, then knead for 8-10 minutes, using medium-low speed. Cover the stand mixer bowl with cling film (plastic wrap) and chill overnight (or up to 3 days).
3. Final dough – Add everything to the biga in the stand mixer bowl, then using the dough hook attachment mix. Once a dough has formed, knead for 8-10 minutes until smooth, soft and slightly tacky, adding more flour as necessary.
4. Form the dough into a ball, lightly oil and place back into the stand mixer bowl. Cover with cling film (plastic wrap) and sit in a warm, draft-free area for 1 hour, or until 1.5 times its original size.
5. Punch dough down and form into a loaf shape. Place into a greased loaf tin (pan), cover loosely with greased cling film (plastic wrap). Let rise for 45-60 minutes or until 1.5 times its original size.
6. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 220°C (425°F).
7. When ready to bake, place a pan of hot water on to the lower shelf of the oven. Lower the temperature to 180°C (350°F) and bake for 20 minutes.
8. Rotate the loaves by 180 degrees and bake for another 20-30 minutes or until the loaves are a rich brown color. The bread should sound hollow when thumped on the bottom. Let cool for 1 hour before slicing and enjoying.