Joy the Baker

Whole Wheat Molasses Bread

January 7, 2011

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I had some pictures taken this week…. the kind of pictures where I had to pretend to be an actress with glossy lips and curled hair.

The kind of pictures where you have to look surprised and pleased and over the shoulder and don’t do that weird thing with your lips and open your eyes wider and tuck that crazy hair under the less crazy hairs and what the heck are you doing with your chin and please stop that…

Those kind of pictures.

Dumb.

Know what I learned?  My forehead is huge.

When I was a kid my Dad made fun of me for having a huge forehead (thanks dad… it’s your fault anyway!), and I had assumed that I had grown into my large upper face region.  I was wrong.  Totally disproportionate.  I’m reconsidering bangs.  Please don’t tell my Dad…. the last thing I need is for that whole thing to start up again.

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I tell you about my large forehead because it has everything to do with this loaf of bread.

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Where my forehead is disproportionate to my face… this bread, with its six simple ingredients, is totally proportionate to… itself.

Wait.

See what I did there?

Forehead and bread.

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Proportions are very important in a loaf as simple as this.  The ratio of flour to liquid and leavening lends a distinct texture… in this case, darn near perfect.

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This beautiful loaf is somewhere right between sweet and savory.  There’s no sugar beyond the dark molasses.  But lemme tell ya… just the molasses adds a really lovely and deep flavor.

Whole wheat flour and cornmeal lend to the savory aspects of the bread and give this loaf a great nuttiness and just a bit of crunch.  I could totally see serving this bread with a hearty vegetarian soup for dinner or a cup of tea for breakfast.  I spread my with Nutella.  Duh… delicious.  Then I spread it with cream cheese and my head just about exploded.  Perfect.

Whole Wheat Molasses Bread

makes one 8×4 or 9×5-inch loaf

recipe from the New York Times

Print this Recipe!

1 2/3 cups buttermilk or plain yogurt

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup cornmeal

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup molasses

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Grease and flour an 8×4 or 9×5-inch loaf pan.  Non-stick baking spray works well too.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, salt and baking soda.

In a small bowl whisk together buttermilk or yogurt and molasses.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold to combine.  The batter will be slightly thick, but not dry.  Spoon batter into prepared pan and place in the oven.  Bake loaf for 45 minutes to an hour.  Depending on how evenly your oven bakes, you might want to rotate the loaf in the middle of baking.  Be careful though.  Don’t manhandle it too hard or it might deflate.

When a skewer inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, remove the loaf from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes in the loaf pan.  Run a butter knife along the sides of the pan and carefully invert onto a wire rack.

Loaf will keep, well wrapped at room temperature for up to 4 days.

Serve with cream cheese, jam, salted butter or nutella.


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