New year, new resolutions. Except this year, my resolution is to make no resolutions at all. I guess I'm just a little hesitant to commit to anything right now, given how many plans has to be set aside in 2020!
However, if your resolution involves eating less processed foods, eating more whole grains, or just belatedly jumping onto the bread-baking bandwagon (or perhaps jumping back on after falling off), then this post's for you.
The good news is that homemade bread isn't nearly as complicated as it might seem, especially if you're starting with a nice, simple loaf like this one.
It may not be quite as instagrammable as a gloriously golden-brown crusty boule, but this straightforward sandwich loaf makes up for its simple looks with its nutty flavour, dense crumb, and a lovely hint of sweetness.
It's basically a homemade copycat for the Subway honey oat bread, but so much better because you don't even have to leave the house to satisfy your craving!
How to Store Your Honey-Oat Bread
My favourite thing about this bread is that it stays soft and fresh for days.
If you wrap it up in plastic or foil, a loaf will keep on the counter for up to 3-4 days, but that's entirely theoretical in my house. In reality, we usually work our way through an entire loaf in a couple of days.
If you don't think you'll be able to eat the entire loaf within a couple days, I would recommend slicing whatever's left and freezing so that you can toast up a slice whenever the craving hits.
(And yes, it makes deeeelicious toast.)
What to Serve with This Bread
Sure, this hearty loaf is great for sandwiches or just sliced up thick and spread with lots of jam, but my favourite way to enjoy it is with a steaming hot bowl of soup or stew.
The dense texture holds up well to dunking, and the hint of sweetness from the honey really shines when paired with spicy chilis or robust meaty stews.
Need some inspiration? Here are some of my favourite pairings:
- Instant Pot Beef and Barley Soup
- Smoky Tomato-Ham Chowder
- Fall Vegetable and Red Lentil Soup
- Instant Pot Pork and Cider Stew
- Chunky Chuckwagon Chili
This homemade sandwich loaf has a soft, dense crumb thanks to a blend of whole wheat and quick oats, and just a little hint of sweetness from honey. It's perfect for pairing with hearty winter soups and stews.
- 1 cup milk
- 3 tbsp honey
- 3 tbsp butter
- ¼ cup lukewarm water
- 2 ¼ tsp quick-rise yeast
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- ¾ cup quick oats
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp quick oats
- In a small saucepan set over low heat, warm the milk until small wisps of steam start rising from the surface. Stir in the butter and honey until the butter is melted. Remove from heat and whisk in the hot water and yeast. Set aside to proof for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook (or a large mixing bowl), combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, quick oats and salt. Add the warm milk mixture, and stir until the dough starts to come together. Using the mixer (or your hands), knead for 7-10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Shape into a ball and transfer to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a clean dishcloth and set aside in a warm, draft-free spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Punch down the dough, and transfer to a clean work surface lightly dusted with flour. Roll into a 9 by 12-inch rectangle and roll up into a loaf. Pinch the seam shut, and lay into into lightly oiled 9×5-inch loaf pan. Cover and let rise for another hour, or until it doubles again in size.
- While the loaf is rising, preheat oven to 350F.
- When ready to bake, warm the remaining 1 tbsp honey in the microwave until liquid. Brush onto the top of the loaf, and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tbsp oats.
- Bake the bread in preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the top is deeply golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- Cool completely and serve sliced with honey and butter.