Prep time30 minutes
Cook Time35-45 minutes
400 grams (2 ⅔ to 3 cups) whole wheat or white whole wheat flour
240-270 mL (1 to 1 ¼ cups) whole milk, room temperature
60 grams (3 tablespoons) honey
55 grams (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
7 grams (One ¼ oz packet, 2 ¼ teaspoons) instant yeast
8 grams (1 ½ teaspoons) kosher salt
A small pat of butter for the crust, optional
In the bowl of a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and 240 mL (1 cup) of milk and mix until a shaggy dough forms. Set aside to allow the flour to hydrate for 20 minutes.
After the flour mixture has rested, add the remaining ingredients (except the small pat of butter for the crust) and mix on low speed with a stand mixer or knead by hand for 7-10 minutes, until a smooth, soft dough forms. If the dough seems very dry when mixing, add the remaining milk.
Place the dough in a greased bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and allow to rise in a warm spot until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Prepare a 8 x 4 ½ inch loaf pan by greasing with butter or oil and lining with a Precut Parchment Paper Square.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently pat it into a rectangle. Fold one short side into the center, then fold the other side up and over the top to make a skinny rectangle. Roll the rectangle up to shape the loaf. Gently tuck the ends under to create a smooth surface. Place the loaf in the pan, seam-side down.
Cover the shaped loaf with a damp towel and allow to rise for another 1-2 hours, until the top of the loaf crests about 1 inch over the top of the pan.
While the loaf is rising for the second time, preheat the oven to 350°F with a rack in the center.
Bake the loaf for 35-45 minutes, until the temperature in the center of the loaf is at least 190°F or until the top is deeply golden brown. If the loaf is browning too quickly but still has substantial time left in the oven, tent the top with aluminum foil to prevent over-browning. Do not underbake. (see note)
Remove the loaf from the oven and use the parchment paper handles to lift the loaf out of the pan. If desired, rub the small pat of butter over the top surface of the bread to create a soft, buttery crust.