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Amish Oatmeal Bread

"While often sliced and served for supper, fresh bread can be found on the table at any meal of the day. I used to make a lot more bread when all of our children were still living at home - usually about nine loaves a week. I would bake the bread before they came so when they got in the door it was good and warm." Elizabeth Coblentz, from The Amish Cook.

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 2 (1/4-ounce ) packages active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 9 to 10 cups bread flour

 

 

METHOD

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, oats, brown sugar, salt, and butter. Pour the boiling water over the top and mix. Let cool to lukewarm. Dissolve the yeast in the warm water and add to the oat mixture. Add enough bread flour to make an elastic dough and knead thoroughly until smooth. Place the dough in a large greased bowl and turn once so it's greased lightly on top. Cover with a loose piece of cheesecloth or plastic wrap and set in a warm, draft-free place to rise until double (about 2 hours).

Punch the dough down, then re-cover and let rise again until nearly double (about 90 minutes). Divide the dough evenly into 4 balls and shape into loaves. Place each loaf in a greased loaf pan, cover, and set in a warm, draft-free place to rise again until nearly double (about 90 minutes). Bake in a 350°F oven for 30 minutes, until the loaves are nicely browned and sound hollow when tapped.

Makes: 4 loaves

Reprinted with permission from ©2002 Kevin L. Williams, Oasis Newsfeatures, Inc. The Amish Cook: Recollections and Recipes from an Old Order Amish Family, published by Ten Speed Press

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