October 9, 2009

Healthy and tasty Bread, plus other stuff

I am so excited! Yesterday I experimented with making 100% whole wheat bread and it turned out perfect! I tried it last week, but used the bread machine to mix it, and it turned into a brick :(

I got the original recipe from Heavenly Homemakers blog. Here is the original:

Honey Whole Wheat Bread

6 cups whole wheat flour, divided
1 ¾ cups warm water, divided
1/3 cup honey
1 pkg. active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoon)
1 t. sea salt
3 T. melted butter

You soak half the flour in almost all the water for 30 minutes, activate the yeast in the rest of the water, then combine all ingredients, adding the rest of the flour to get a good dough, then knead till smooth and elastic, set to rise for an hour or so. You know how to do bread, most everyone I think.

Well, if you know me, you know I altered the recipe, of course :)

I didn't have honey, so I substituted molasses. I upped the salt to 1 Tablespoon, upped the yeast to 1 Tablespoon, added 1 T wheat gluten and 1 T soy lecithin, and while I was adding the rest of the flour to make a dough, Samantha woke up wanting to eat, so I tried entertaining her in the bouncy seat while I hurriedly kneaded the dough. Finally she wasn't waiting any longer so I just covered it and left it. After about 1.5 hours, it had risen, but I had to go somewhere. So I punched it down,kneaded it better this time, made into a pretty ball, put it back in the bowl and covered it, then stuck in the fridge. When I got back and hour later, it had risen perfectly. I shaped it into loaves, put them in oiled pans and let rise, almost 2 hours till risen enough.

It baked up nicely, not too high, and it's soft and the crumb is nice and even all throughout the loaf. By the way, the soy lecithin helps keep the bread soft, like storebought bread soft, and is a natural dough conditioner. The gluten helps the whole wheat rise better. Oh and the pre-soaking of flour also activates and breaks down the gluten.

So, to recap the recipe:

6 cups whole wheat flour

1-2 cups water, I had to use more

1/4 cup honey or molasses

1 T sea salt

1 T wheat gluten (I'll add more next time, but that was all that was left)

1 T soy lecithin

1 T yeast

3 T butter, melted

Soak cups flour in 1.5 cups ore more of warm water. Let sit for 3o minutes. Combine remaining water, sweetener and yeast and allow to stand 5-10 minutes or until foamy. Melt the butter, and add it along with the lecithin and salt to liquids, then add to soaking flour. Sprinkle on the gluten and add enough flour to create a soft dough. Knead 5-10 minutes until smooth and elastic, cover and let rise till doubled in size.

Punch down dough, knead a few minutes, shape into ball, allow to rise again till doubled.

Butter/oil two loaf pans. Shape dough into loaves, put in pans and allow to rise until the top of dough is level or slightly above loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees 30-35 minutes.

Cool, then slice. I wrap one loaf in plastic wrap and freeze it and keep the other out.

Because it takes awhile to rise, the prolonged soaking time helps to break down the whole grain and make the nutrients more available. If I used buttermilk or something similar, that would make it even more nutritious.

Let me tell ya, I have made so many whole wheat bricks in my past I could fill the deep freezer! Dough enhancers are awesome!

I am still struggling with organization. I am backed up on the laundry again and the floors are looking pretty sad. Yes, I put baking above cleaning. But it makes me feel good, and it's productive. I'll get to it :)

I haven't started my eating plan yet. I've barely had time to read the book since my husband has been working late so much, there's no extra hands to help with other stuff.

Alright, since I can't help but be real and honest on my blog, there is something going on. Sunday we prayed over the baby, as it appeared she had reflux. She started doing better. Well, on Tuesday I noticed her not wanting to eat and it was really a struggle to get more than 2 oz of milk down her gullet. So, I decided to call the doctor and let him know how the soy stuff went and how she was doing. He felt we should try zantac.

So, here's the deal, I am sitting in the chair trying to feed her and she's resisting it. In my heart, I just felt I should do what the doctor says and am at peace about it. I called my husband and we both agreed to give her the medicine. At least then we would know for sure.

Did God fail us? Hardly. Sometimes when we are standing and believing on several things, we get stretched thin, and it's hard to remain strong. In this instance, God wants us to use medicine. We're fine with that. When my husband was sick, he used medicine while we were believing for his healing. Using medicine isn't in place of the healing, in some instances, it's the catalyst to healing. There are Christian doctors out there (which hers is an awesome one) that God uses to help people. A lady at church was diagnosed with advanced cancer. Her and her husband prayed about the right course of action, and God told them to do the treatments. She did and at first was very ill, but then it got better and better and finally it was gone. But they stood firm on what they were led to do by the Lord. It's not always the same every time.

So, I also felt totally released in my spirit from making her formula. Before I felt like it was so vital and that if I didn't do it I was a bad mom. But, that moment, I instantly felt calm and that it would be fine.

Samantha is taking 1ml of zantac three times a day, is using Carnation good start formula with probiotics, the Dr. Brown bottles and rice cereal twice a day. (to weight the formula and help it not slosh in her belly) She spends a lot of time upright- in the bouncy seats, the swing, the carseat and we elevated the mattress in her cradle. She is happy and smiley and adorable. She has days where she's really hungry and times when not interested. I just monitor how much she eats in a day, and if we're lacking, I spoon feed some cereal and sometimes she'll want the rest of the bottle. It may take a few weeks for the zantac to work- it helps the acid from coming up into her esophagus and keep the sphincter closed so it isn't coming back into her throat.

So, there ya go. I might get a lot of flack for one, not breastfeeding for long, and 2, for giving medicine, and 3, for feeding solids early. Do not judge lest you be judged is all I have to say :-) You gotta do what works, even if it isn't popluar.


Joy Comes in the Morning said...

Been there done that. My now 8mo had the same issues. At four months my milk dried up and I honestly greived over it. I felt so useless. I also started her on cereal early because she went from fussy and having colic to eating all the time. It was the only way to slow her down. Sometimes we have to do what we have to do. You care enough for your family to put aside your own feelings to do what is best for them. I think that says alot about you:)

Anonymous said...

Have you tried the Alimentum (or something like that) formula by Similac (I think, it's been a while)?

It's about double the price, but has a very high success rate for babies with eating problems.

It smells bad, costs a lot, but if baby takes to it, then it's worth it. :-)

Anonymous said...

I'm Glad to hear that you've found something that works for you. It's so hard being a mother, and then when you try hard to live up to others people's standards, it feels impossible and overwhelming. So often we just want to be the "best mother," So much so, that we become obsessive about things that simply are minor things.

Guess what? I breastfed for a year with my second. He also had acid reflux. He was on medicine. The medicine gave him the boost he needed to heal, God used the medicine to help heal him. Sometimes our "pre-conceived" notions of how God should work, don't happen, because he is God. So many times people try to fit God into this little box, but his ways are so vast and varied, that he just doesn't fit. God colors outside man made lines.

Don't feel like the reflux is your fault for not breastfeeding, or anything else, like I said, my son had it, even though breastfeeding is suppose to be this miracle food source without blame or question.

My formula fed (parents choice brand ! Nothing special! ) and breastfed baby are EQUAL health wise!

I guess my point is simply, just relax and give yourself permission to not worry about what other people say is the best, instead do what you feel is right, what is best, and what works.

Good luck and God bless you and your family!

Jess said...

You know there are so many times that we mothers second guess ourselves, then we third guess ourselves and so on and so on. But isn't it a wonderful feeling when we finally calm ourselves enough to listen to Gods direction and then we get that wonderful feeling that only Gods love and kindness can give us.

Children are such a blessing and with that blessing comes many things that we must face.

I always said that I would try and try to keep my children from taking medicine, that I would do things naturally. But I believe that God wanted to show me that he put doctors on this earth for a reason too. Now I don't take my children to the doctor everytime they sneeze but my second son has kept an ear infection it seems from the time he was born. He is going to see an ENT at the end of this month. We tried natural measures but the pain would get unbearable and then he would have really high fevers. I had to rely on medication to help him thru this infection. Hopefully we will find out what the problem is and get it fixed.

And then when I had my little girl last year, my milk dried up in the first month. I had all kinds of it then in about two days it was gone. I had to put her on formula and it really bothered me. Then the good Lord brought it to my attention that things like doctors (good) and formula was here to help me when I needed it.

I think that you are a wonderful mother to see that what your child needed at the time was help, help that at the moment you couldn't give her and God was showing you another way to help her. And I am so glad to hear she is doing better.


Anneatheart said...

Aww, everyone is so sweet. I was really expecting to get 'griped' at for what was going on. Thanks so much for all the encouraging words- true sisters in Christ :)

Sherah said...

No judging here - I've had too many experiences that show me I definitely do not know it all. =)

"I am still struggling with organization. I am backed up on the laundry again and the floors are looking pretty sad. Yes, I put baking above cleaning. But it makes me feel good, and it's productive. I'll get to it :)"

I loved what you wrote here because it was so much like me. I've recently fallen even more in love with baking and...I was amazed the other day to hear the spirit's gentle voice telling me that I am getting "too" into it. I need to relax a bit and stop making 5-course meals and get some housework done. Ha ha! And to think I used to dread cooking....!