Whole wheat Fruit and nut bread

This simple fruit and nut bread made using whole wheat multigrains is a delicious one that can be enjoyed by all .

Though it has the basic bread ingredients, when baked it turns out to almost a cake like in texture with the inside very moist and the crust outside not too hard , so easy to slice and enjoy a moist bread.
With the just right density and the crunch you want in a bread , almost like a rustic peasant bread but surprisingly softer.,

Yeast mixed with warm water and sugar becomes foamy within few minutes.

The dough has doubled in size.

The loaf has been allowed to rise for second time.

 Make the slash and time to bake.


4  ½   cups  of which I took 4 cups of whole wheat multigrain flour and 1/2 cup of all purpose flour.   ( reserving about ½ cup for kneading bread on counter)

4 1/2 tsp  active dry yeast

½  cup warm water (120 degrees)

1 cup buttermilk at room temp.
2 tbsp butter softened.

1 tsp  salt
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup of finely chopped dry fruits and nuts like raisins, cranberries, walnuts, pistachios


In a large bowl combine the warm water, yeast, sugar and let it remain till foamy.  Whisk and blend well, add salt  then adding the flour slowly,  add the chopped  nuts and berries.and start  kneading  by adding the buttermilk.

It will be shaggy to start with and keep adding the buttermilk and do not add additional flour till you get the dough into a smooth  ball , though very soft in texture.For mixing all the dry ingredients  in the beginning you can use a large  wooden  spoon. .   The dough will be thick and require some elbow grease to knead. Be prepared for a sticky floury work out.

Then  use your hands in the mixing bowl to knead everything well for about 5 minutes.  

Turn on to a floured surface and knead bread for another 3 minutes.  In the final stages of shaping the dough , use the softened butter to knead. Now the dough will be smooth and elastic. Shape into smooth ball...Put the dough in an oiled bowl, wrap a cling film or cover with a damp kitchen towel and let it rest..  

Cover and let rise (about double in size) in a warm space for a couple of hours (or more depending upon the temperature).

 After the dough has almost doubled in size after nearly an hour or so, place it on the floured kitchen counter and knock out the air by flattening it out and keep doing this for 3 to 5 minutes. Then knead for another couple of minutes well., 

Shape into loaf, which can be circle, oblong,   or round in shape.  Make slits  or slashes on top with a knife  

Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Keep it to rise once more upto 30 minutes and then bake in preheated 375 degree oven for about 50-55 minutes.    

Let bread cool for about 30 minutes before slicing. Use a sharp serrated knife to cut slices.  

Enjoy the fruit and nut bread with your cup of tea. Choose your own selection of dry fruits and nuts.


Kneading Tips

 Kneading is the process by which you align and elongate gluten strands to develop them to the point that it can hold the gasses that the yeast give off. This makes your bread rise and then set in the oven. The more well-developed your gluten “web,” the more gasses your bread will hold, the higher it will rise and the more open and airy its texture
Kneading also helps to evenly distribute the yeast and the gasses it creates throughout your dough. This will result in a more even crumb in your finished loaf. Everything you try so hard to avoid doing to pie dough, you try to do when making bread.
 The most-often described method of kneading is to push the dough away from you with the heel of your hands, fold the dough over, give it a quarter turn, and do it again. 
The trick is to work the dough as a continuous mass - if you tear the dough into little pieces, you break the gluten strands you’ve worked so hard to form. So, however you choose to knead, put some muscle into it.

The next trick is in knowing when you’ve kneaded the dough enough. When your dough is well kneaded, it should be very smooth and springy—it should bounce back when you pull on it or poke it. source..steamy kitchen