Quinoa Bread

Bread beginner


This is the recipe for a quinoa bread I like to make at home. Quinoa is a high-protein grain that you can buy in most health food stores, and increasingly, in many regular stores, too. I use quinoa flour here, as well as a bit of raw red quinoa, which is optional. This makes a high protein bread, which is tasty and good for you. Many vegetarians rely on quinoa in their diets, to insure they get enough protein, so here's another cool thing to make from it.

In the video, I show you how to shape it in two ways, a ring, and for a regular baking pan. The ring is very pretty, and not hard to do. Give it a try!

Cup, bowl, spoon, baking pan, baguette pan, rolling pin, serrated knife,oven.

2 tsp active dry yeast
2 cups of warm water
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 tbsps of honey
1.25 cups quinoa flour
3 cups of white flour
.5 cups red quinoa ( optional)

The first steps in this recipe are exactly the same as making a regular white bread. Place the yeast into a large bowl. Add two cups of warm water to get the yeast activated. How warm? I use tap water. It's the right temperature when it's hot enough to start hurting my finger ( around 105 degrees F).

Stir the water and yeast together with a spoon once to make sure the yeast doesn't stick to the bottom of the bowl. Now walk away for 10 minutes. When you come back, there should be a scum or bubbles on the top of the water. If you're unsure, watch the video, it shows you what it should look like.

Next, add the salt. Give it a stir.

Now, add 2 cups of the white flour, one cup at a time. Stir it in with the water, making sure it all gets wet. Next, add the honey, and then the quinoa flour, one half at a time. (If you are making this bread to fit into a single bread pan, add the red quinoa now. If you are going to make the ring-shaped bread, wait to add the red quinoa later.) Back to mixing the dough: the consistency will change from pancake batter to a thick gloopy mess, until finally it gets too hard to stir with a big spoon. It should still be pretty wet and sticky at this stage.

It's time to get your hands in there. Put flour on your hands, and start mixing in extra flour with your fingers. Squeeze the dough as you add more flour. Once it isn't really sticky, start kneading. You can do all of this in the bowl. To knead the dough, press it down with the heel of your hand so that it lies flat on the bottom of the bowl. Next, fold it over on itself. Push that down with your hands, adding a bit of flour as you go. Keep doing this folding and flattening until the dough isn't sticky anymore.

Now you should be able to pick up the dough with your hands, and it hangs together. Start molding it into a ball. It should start to feel smooth and silky. It is often a bit warm and pliable, but won't fall apart if you hold it up, allowing gravity to tug on it. The video can help you see what this stage should look like. But relax, you've done the hardest part already!

The First Rise

Now it's time for the first rise to begin. Take the dough ball out of the bowl. Scrape out any of the flour in the bowl, dump it. Now add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the bowl and grease the bowl. This is to prevent the dough from sticking to the sides. Now put the dough back in. Cover with a damp towel. The first rise has begun!

Allow the dough to rise for an hour until it has doubled in size. How long this takes depends on the temperature of your kitchen. If it's cold, the first rise may take 90 minutes.

Once the dough has doubled in size, it needs to be punched down. So take your fist and slam it into the bread so that it deflates. For the past hour the yeast has been eating the flour, and belching out carbon dioxide. Now you're letting that gas escape. Pick up the bread and knead it with your fingers for a minute or two, just like you did before.

If you are placing the dough into a regular bread pan ( the ones with high sides), then put the oil in the pan, rub it around with your hands, then place the dough ball into the pan. Cover with a damp towel, and let it rise for an hour.

If you are making the ring, here's what to do next with the dough:Spread some flour on the clean table. You need a floured surface that is a little wider than your bread pan from side to side, and three times as wide heading away from you. This will give you enough room to roll out the dough.You'll need a long shallow baking pan to place the ring in, so get it ready.

Take the dough ball, and flatten it with your hands on the floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it out so that it forms a rectangle. The rectangle's shortest side should be almost as long as your baking pan. The longest side of the rectangle should be two to three times as long as your baking pan. I recommend that you watch the video to see how to do this. Now, sprinkle the red quinoa all over the dough. Next,you need to roll up the dough so that it becomes a snake shape. To do that, start at the shortest end of the rectangle ( the one that is almost as big as your baking pan). There are two ends you could choose from, or course. Use the shortest of the two. Turn the dough around so that this shortest end is closest to you, if necessary. Roll the dough away from you using both hands with fingers spread out, so that the roll is even. Roll it all the way to the end. It should now look like a long snake.

Now, shape the bread into a ring, as though the snake was eating its own tail. Take one end of the snake and stretch its skin over the end of the snake, so the place where the two ends join is hidden. Pinch this skin a bit so it will stick to the other end of the snake.

Before placing the ring into your pan, rub the pan with a little bit of oil. Now gently lift the ring into the pan.

The Second Rise

With the ring in the pan, it is time for the second rise. Place a damp cloth towel over top of the whole pan, and leave it to double in size, which should take about an hour.

Baking the Dough

After the hour is done, it is time to bake the bread. The oven needs to be preheated to 375F. Also, place a pan of water into the oven as it is preheating. A steamy oven helps a lot with the crust. One cup of water is enough.

The instructions for this next part are the same whether you made the ring, or the regular shaped bread.>Once the oven is at temperature, take the towel off the bread that has been rising. Place the pan into the steamy oven. When the oven door opens, turn your face away, so it doesn't get burned by the steam. Place the pan inside. Bake at 375F for 23 minutes

After 23 minutes, pull it out. The crust should look golden. The bread should sound hollow if you tap on it. Give the bread ten minutes to rest before you try to eat it - I know waiting is hard! The bread will collapse if you try to cut into it too early.

The ring looks lovely thanks to the red quinoa seeds, and the loaf is a great hearty bread, with lots of protein, thanks to the quinoa's high protein content.