Do you have a favorite type of bread? Whole Wheat. White. Rye. Pumpernickel. The list goes on. I can honestly say that I don’t have a favorite. I love all types of bread. I’ve heard friends refer to bread as just the “vehicle” for the middle of the sandwich, and I couldn’t disagree more! Bread can either make or break the sandwich. You can have the most amazing sliced meat or gourmet cheese and a dense, hard piece of bread will totally ruin it!
This Honey Wheat Bread is amazing. It actually reminds me of the signature bread served at Outback Restaurant. I wouldn’t dare venture a guess at the number of loaves of bread served every weekend night at Outback! Like most breads, this recipe takes a bit of time to make, but it doesn’t require all that much work. The time comes from the mere fact that the bread needs to rise a couple of times before it can be baked. So plan to make this bread on a snowy day or on a Sunday afternoon when you’re doing chores.
One of my favorite ways to eat this bread is actually plain with just a little bit of whipped butter sprinkled with sea salt. To make whipped butter, just add a splash of milk to a couple tablespoons of room-temperature butter and whisk vigorously. (Because I use milk when I whip butter, I do store any leftover amount in the refrigerator.) Finish with a couple grains of sea salt sprinkled on top.
One interesting feature of this bread is its dark color. This comes from caramel color, an ingredient often used by professional chefs to add color to food. If you have a food service distributor nearby, you can pick up a large bottle of it. Or you can actually make your own pretty easily. I used a homemade version that I came across on The Fresh Loaf, and it worked great. (Plus, it also made the whole house smell like toasted marshmallows for the rest of the day!) This recipe also uses a generous amount of cocoa powder, which contributes to the distinct dark color of this bread. You can certainly leave out the coloring ingredients, and your bread will still taste great…it will just be lighter in color. Enjoy!