When making bread with yeast, it’s important that you knead the dough well and let it rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size. Sometimes I use a mixer, and other times I’ve had my husband help me knead the dough by hand (it turned out so amazing that I said I would make him do it from now on!) You can cut down on the amount of brown sugar, if you’d like – but I like to add a tablespoon of honey or syrup because it activates the yeast and the dough will rise better.
2 cups boiling water
1 cup rolled oats, traditional or quick (not instant)
1/2 cup Domino brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) Land O’ Lakes butter
1 tablespoon kosher salt or 2 1/2 teaspoons table salt
1 tablespoon instant yeast
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
4 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour
In a large mixing bowl, combine the water, oats, maple or brown sugar, honey, butter, salt, and cinnamon. Let cool to lukewarm, about 10 to 15 minutes.
Add the yeast and flours, stirring to form a rough dough. Knead (about 10 minutes by hand, 5 to 7 minutes by machine) until the dough is smooth and satiny.
Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl with lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour. Since the dough is warm to begin with (from the boiling water), it should become quite puffy.
Divide the dough in half, and shape each half into a loaf. Place the loaves in two greased 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ bread pans.
Cover the pans with lightly greased plastic wrap and allow the loaves to rise until they’ve crowned about 1″ over the rim of the pan, about 60 to 90 minutes.
Bake the loaves in a preheated 350°F oven for 35 to 40 minutes, tenting them lightly with aluminum foil after 25 minutes, to prevent over-browning. Remove them from the oven when they’re golden brown, and the interior registers 190°F on a digital thermometer.
Turn the loaves out onto a rack to cool. Store at room temperature, well-wrapped, for several days; freeze for longer storage.
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Quick tip: Just before baking, brush the loaves with egg white or water, and sprinkle with oats or seeds.