The first time I ever saw millet I was in love with it. I loved it's golden color. I loved it nutty charm. It's rapier whit. Okay…maybe not it's rapier whit. It didn't talk to me…at first. However, when I got to know it and use it in many applications, it not only began to talk to me, it began to sing! Oh land. I love a good millet! Now I have to say it.
Millet. Gosh. It's used as bird seed most often in America and it's such a sad use of such an amazing grain. I'm super duper fond of it. I mean really…look how pretty it is…
I have a secret to adding it to my millet bread that will make it moist and delightful. I'm certain you want to know what it is.
Here's my recipe for millet bread first. I'm sure you'll want that to get started.
6 cups whole wheat Praire Gold flour ( Did you see how to make whole wheat flour? look here
2 tsp active dry yeast
2 1/2 cup Soy Milk
(or regular milk)–luke warm and no hotter than 110 degrees.
24 hours before you want to make your bread, place 1 cup millet in 2 cups of boiling water. Cover and allow to sit for 24 hours. This will ensure that the grain is well moisturized. Drain off water completely.
In a large 2 gallon bowl combine the soy milk, oil, honey, yeast and soaked millet. Make sure the yeast is active. Add 5 cups of flour and the salt. Knead about 500 turns by hand or 5 minutes in a mixer at medium setting, adding as little flour as possible. Allow dough to sit 10 minutes and assimilate moisture before adding any more flour (as it most likely will not need more flour at all). Roll into a ball and place in a covered straight sided crock and allow to raise until doubled, about 2 hours at 85 degrees. Tenderly punch down dough and release excess air. Allow to raise again until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Now if you've never made a loaf of bread before, there is a method. This is Lauren's first loaf…
Shape the dough into a rectangle, as you would for loaf molding. Please see directions. Because once you do, your loaves will always look amazing. Now, l
ightly oil and dust with cornmeal two standard sized loaf pans.Place loaf in a lightly oiled standard loaf pan. The pan size is important. 8 inch by 4 inch. Any larger, and the loaf will end up squatted without a well shaped slice. You can still use the larger pans, but just note, I don't recommend them for that reason.
To keep the top crust from separating from the loaf, spread with butter or oil. This keeps it from getting dry, which is one of the leading causes of crust separation.
I bake in a preheated solar oven after letting the dough raise for 45 minutes. If you bake in a regular oven, bake after raising 1 hour and bake in an oven preheated to 400 degrees. Bake 45 minutes (or until internal temperature registers 165-175 degrees with a meat thermometer).
Remove from pan right after baking is done and place on a wire rack. I wrap mine in a clean kitchen towel and then place them in a clean plastic bag until cool. This helps steam the crust and makes them easy to slice as well as preventing any rock hard whole grains of millet from being on the surface of the bread.
There you go.