Oatmeal Bread: The staff of life

This recipe comes from the famous More-With-Less Cookbook, by Doris Longacre, and published, I believe, by the Mennonite Central Committee.  I highly recommend this book, as it is not simply  a collection of recipes. “It was born from the compulsion that someone, somehow must prod us over-fed North Americans to do something about our over-abundance” {juliebee’s note: and I would say, our over-consumption!} “in relation to the world food crisis. It implores us to begin today on a program of responsible eating. There is a way of wasting less, eating less and spending less which gives not less but more.”  The emphasis is on simplicity as a means of responsibility as well as good nutrition and enjoyment.  There is good information regarding over-consumption of protein, sugar, etc. If you can find this book, buy it immediately.  (I”ll check to see if it is still available from the MCC).  At any rate, my friend LaDonna made a particularly good batch of dinner rolls one day, and I asked her for the recipe.  She smiled and replied, “You already have it; it’s in More With Less.” I used to double the recipe since it went so fast at our house, especially when it was hot out of the oven.

Oatmeal Bread

Combine in a large bowl:

  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat floour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespn salt
  • 2 tablespn. butter

Over this, pour

  • 2 cups boiling water

In a small bowl, combine:

  • 1 pkg. dry yeast (or 1 tablespn)
  • 1/2 cup warm water

When the oatmeal bater is cooled to lukewarm, add the yeast.

Stir in

  • 5 cups flour (I usually used 3 cups of white and 2 cups of whole wheat)

When dough is stiff enough to handle, turn onto a floured board and knead 50-1o minutes.  (If you have a Kitchenaid, let it do the work.)

Place in a greased bowl, cover and let it rise until doubled, about an hour.  Punch it down and let it rise again.  Punch it down again, and shape into 2 loaves.  Put them into greased 9x5x3″ loaf pans.  Let them rise for about 30 minutes; then bake at 350 for  30-40 minutes.  (You can test the loaves by tapping them lightly; when they sound hollow, there done. Pop them out and cool them on a rack (I use muffin pans that are turned upside down) and rub them all over with butter. One of life’s ironies is that bread tastes better when it’s piping hot, but it is easier to cut when it has cooled.  And if you are going to store them in the freezer, you can wrap them up tightly in plastic wrap while they are warm. and them bag them up.

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