Whole Grain Anadama Bread

100% Whole Grain Anadama Bread Crumb - Peter Reinhart

Whole grain anadama bread is my first choice when I have a need for hearty sandwich loaves. It has an interesting combination of dense chewiness and texture from the addition of cornmeal. The aroma and richness that it gets from molasses keeps it from taking a backseat even with the richest of sandwich fillings. The use of 100% whole grains also makes it very satisfying and keeps hunger pangs at bay.

I surprisingly haven’t pulled a single tooth-shattering loaf of brick from the oven since trying Peter Reinhart’s methods for making 100% whole grain breads. His formulas often call for a biga and soaker prepared a day ahead and combined in a process he calls the epoxy method.

makes 1 loaf
recipe adapted from Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads

Whole Grain Anadama Bread

For the soaker:

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (4 ounces) cornmeal
7 tablespoons (2 ounces) whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces) water

Mix the soaker ingredients until evenly hydrated. Cover and leave at room temperature for 12 to 24 hours.

For the biga:

1 3/4 cups (8 ounces) whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
3/4 cup (6 ounces) water, at room temperature

Mix the biga ingredients until a rough ball of dough is formed. Knead the dough for about 2 to 3 minutes to ensure that the dough is evenly hydrated throughout. Cover and refrigerate at least 8 hours and up to 3 days.

Whole grain anadama biga and soaker
anadama soaker and biga

For the final dough:

all of the soaker
all of the biga
1 cup (4.5 ounces) whole wheat flour
5/8 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
3 tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Notes:

  • You can also use 2 tablespoons vegetable oil to replace the butter.

Remove the biga from the refrigerator about 2 hours before making the final dough. Cut up the soaker and biga into small pieces and combine with all of the final dough ingredients. Mixing the soaker and biga in this manner is the main idea behind Reinhart’s epoxy method.

Whole grain epoxy method

Mix until a rough ball is formed.

Whole Grain Anadama Dough Before Kneading

Knead for about 5 minutes, making sure that all the ingredients are evenly distributed throughout the dough. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes then knead again briefly for about 1 minute. Notice how differently the dough feels after the 5 minute rest. This step helps strengthen the gluten.

Whole Grain Anadama Dough After Kneading

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Let rise at room temperature for 45 to 60 minutes or until 1 1/2 times its size.

Transfer the dough gently to a lightly floured counter and shape the loaf:

shaped anadama loaf
anadama loaf before final shaping

Place the shaped dough in a greased 4 by 8 1/2 inch loaf pan. My sandwich loaf pan is slightly larger but it will do just fine. Cover the loaf pan loosely and let rise at room temperature for another 45 to 60 minutes or until 1 1/2 times its size.

Final proof in loaf pan
shaped anadama loaf proofing in the bread pan

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the pan in the middle of the oven and lower the temperature to 350°F. Bake for 20 minutes, rotate the pan, then bake for another 20 to 30 minutes, until the loaf is browned well on all sides and sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom.

Freshly Baked Whole Grain Anadama

Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and let cool for at least 1 hour.

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13 Responses to “Whole Grain Anadama Bread”

  1. Ralph says:

    This whole grain bread looks good. I like recipes from Peter Reinhart, even had a cooking class with him, though I don’t know his new book. I will try out this recipe for sure. Thanks! :-)

    Ciao.Ralph.

  2. MyKitchenInHalfCups says:

    Jude this looks like really wonderful bread. Not sure what it says about me but I really love cornmeal and molasses! Excellent loaf and photos.

  3. YeastSpotting June 13 2008 | Wild Yeast says:

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  4. Anna at Mediocre Chocolate says:

    I have this book, and have been working my way through the recipes. This one is on my to-try list. I just loved his transistional whole wheat sandwich loaf, and I think the technique is so convenient. I look forward to comparing notes with you!

  5. sally burt says:

    Great – I love this cookbook – but you missed an important note and that is the interior, center temp of the bread when it is finished – I use the temp method and it never fails to tell me when to remove the bread from the oven. Bread should be at least 190 degrees at its center – don’t cut for one hour as that final hour is important in the cooking process.

  6. WHole Wheat-Honey Anadama Bread | The Blog That Ate Manhattan says:

    [...] Jude makes Peter Reinhart’s recipe – great photos of the method [...]

  7. bestbuy says:

    Jude this looks like really wonderful bread. Not sure what it says about me but I really love cornmeal and molasses! Excellent loaf and photos.

  8. pam says:

    I had to add a lot more water than is called for in your recipe. Not sure why.

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