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Wednesday Baking | Two-Tone Bread

Every Wednesday (ok, most Wednesdays!) I share a baking recipe. And lots of pictures of said baking recipe. I don’t call this Wednesday Baking because I bake solely on Wednesdays…no, my oven gets a workout much more frequently than once a week! Wednesday just happens to be the day I share baking recipes with you. All the past baking posts are archived in the Wednesday Baking category, which can also be found in a tab underneath my blog header.

Today’s baking recipe is kind of novel and fun. The loaves it produces look ordinary on the outside:

But the inside is kind of out of the ordinary.

You may not want to make this your everyday bread, but it’s awfully fun to give away or to serve on a special occasion.

I discovered this Better Homes and Gardens recipe back in my early days of yeast baking as a teen, and since it requires two types of bread dough, my sister and I used to team up and make it together (one of us would knead the white dough and one would knead the wheat dough). I haven’t made it as often since I left home, but it occurred to me recently that if I taught Joshua or Lisey to knead bread dough, I could have a stand-in for my sister. Must get on that.

Making two separate doughs isn’t quite as labor-intensive as you might imagine because both doughs start out with the same base. And if you’ve got a stand mixer, you can save time and effort by letting the mixer knead one type of dough while you knead the other by hand.

This dough starts out with yeast and flour, like usual.

and with warm liquid ingredients, like usual.

The two are combined, like usual, and the result is a pretty soupy mixture that’s more like batter. At this point, you’ll need to divide the batter in half. The batter is about 5 cups, so you should put about 2.5 cups into a separate bowl.

Fortunately for me, I have 2 Kitchen-Aid bowls, and that comes in handy at times like these!

To make the whole wheat dough, add molasses to one of the bowls,

and enough whole wheat flour to make a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic.

Place the dough into the bowl, cover with a wet tea towel, and let it rise.

To make the white dough, simply add enough flour to make a soft dough, turn it out onto a floured surface, and knead it until it’s smooth and elastic.

Cover both bowls with a wet tea towel and let them rise for an hour, or until they’re doubled in size. Once they’re risen, punch the doughs down and divide each in half. Roll out a whole wheat portion to a 12×8 inch rectangle, and do the same with a white portion.

You can place the whole wheat dough on top or the white dough on top…it’s up to you. My personal preference is to put the whole wheat on the bottom, but I usually make one loaf each way!

Roll the doughs up together, starting from the short side.

Place the loaf, seam side down, in a greased loaf pan. You can use a 9×5 or and 8×4 pan…the loaf will just be shaped a little differently based on the pan size you use. I did one of each so you could see the difference.

Cover the loaves and let them rise for about 30-45 minutes, or until they’re doubled in size. Here’s the 9×5 before rising:

and after rising:

Bake the loaves in a preheated 350 ° F oven for 30-35 minutes. This bread is a little bit denser than your typical loaf, so don’t be tempted to take these out too soon or the insides will be doughy (dense bread takes longer to bake than light bread does).

As you can see, the loaf pan size makes a pretty big different in the way the loaves look. The small pan produces a much taller loaf than the large pan does.

For further comparison, here’s what the insides of each loaf look like. The loaf on the left was made by placing the white dough on top of the whole wheat dough and the loaf on the right was made the opposite way.

So, there you have it. Go find a kneading buddy, or employ your stand mixer, and make yourself some fancy bread. 😉

Two-Tone Bread-makes 2 loaves
Rrintable Two-Tone Bread Recipe

5-6 cups all purpose or bread flour
4-1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
3 cups milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup shortening (I used butter)
1-tablespoon salt
3 tablespoons dark molasses
2 1/4 cups whole-wheat flour

In a large mixer bowl, combine 3 cups of the all-purpose flour and the yeast. Heat milk, sugar, butter, and salt to 115-120 ° F. Add warm liquids to dry ingredients and beat for 3 minutes.

Divide batter in half (2.5 cups in each bowl). To one half, stir in enough remaining all-purpose flour to make a soft dough, turn dough out onto floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic.

To the other half, add molasses and enough whole wheat flour to make a soft dough. Turn out onto a floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic.

Place both doughs into separate bowls, cover with a wet tea towel, and let rise for 1 hour.

Punch doughs down and divide each in half. Roll one light half and one dark half, each to a 12×8 inch rectangle. Place the dark dough atop the light dough (or vice versa) and roll up, starting from the short end.

Place the loaf, seam side down, into a greased 4×6 or 5×9 inch loaf pan. Repeat with remaining dough.

Cover loaves with a wet tea towel and let rise 30-45 minutes, or until doubled. Bake in a preheated 350 ° F oven for 30-35 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes, then remove loaves to a wire rack to cool thoroughly.

Today’s 365 post: The newest member of our family

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Saturday 20th of August 2016

Hi Kristen, I did a search for this recipe, I remembered the two-toned loaves name, and found your recipe and pictures here. I'm so glad to find it!!! I used to make this bread nearly every week back in the late 70's when I baked a lot. I just bought a new kitchen Aid Mixer and will be making this again. Thanks so much!!!!

Joanne Wright

Wednesday 3rd of November 2010

I really hope it's not just me, but I absolutely love looking at pictures of bread and this loaf looks really beautiful. I will be trying it this week. I have also put a link on my blog to this post as I had today posted a very basic wholemeal bread recipe which is now totally overshadowed :-). I do have a question though if anyone can help? It says you need a kneading buddy - I have no chance of that my two are too young to be able to produce the kneading that this requires. So as I believe white can take longer than wholemeal to rise - is that correct? Could you knead the white first and then the wholemeal after? I am quite happy to hand knead both as it is a fantastic workout for the arms and raises heartrate. Would it be successful? Or how about kneading white first and letting that rise at room temp but leaving the wholemeal in my airing cupboard where there is gentle heat - or vice versa - gosh am confusing myself now...


Wednesday 3rd of November 2010

Oh, you can definitely knead both yourself. It's just more of a pain that way. lol Go for it!


Wednesday 3rd of November 2010

It's to funny, my favorite bread is the swirl bread from Perfridge Farm (at least I think its that brand) that is rye and pumpernickel. I was also excited because it was on a slight sale of 2 for 5 at publix. Now I have a recipe to make my own swirl bread. Now if I can just get my fiance in on the action I'll have my buddy system in place as well. :)


Wednesday 3rd of November 2010

that looks SO delicious...i want some, hot from the oven with butter right now.

Tina (Tightwad Mom)

Wednesday 3rd of November 2010

Looks like the perfect thing to pair with soup! They would also make the perfect pairing with a jar of home made jam for a fun Christmas gift.

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