This post is sponsored by Red Star Yeast! All opinions expressed are solely my own. 🙂
I’m really struggling with what to say. Right now it’s Sunday afternoon and I’m sitting at the counter having just finished a late lunch (this and lots of guac). It’s the first weekend of spring break so it should be nice and sunny, yet earlier today it was snowing and now it’s hitting the window sideways as a mixture of rain and hail.
I’d show you a picture but you wouldn’t see anything but white because that’s what it look like outside. Spring, pleeease come soon. I need you!
So… this bread.
One of my favorite restaurants (Stone’s, for you local folks!) serves a sandwich that has chicken salad on the most wonderful cranberry walnut slices. It’s my absolute favorite and almost always my go-to. After doing a little research on the internets I realized it’s not that hard to make your own cranberry walnut bread that’s not only ahhhmazing, but whole wheat and vegan! YES.
As always, I used Red Star Yeast to make my dough rise. It was my first time using Red Star Platinum Yeast as opposed to regular active dry yeast and I can honestly say that it made a huge difference in my bread! The yeast was more active, it rose better, and I think it tasted better 😀
In biology we just learned about fungi which is the kingdom that yeast is part of. The scientific name, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, literally means “sugar-eating fungus” which is why it works so much better when you add a touch of sugar to the dough. You can learn more, especially why the dough rises, on the What is Yeast? page of their website! I don’t know about you guys but my inner nerd loves to see stuff like this. Don’t forget to check out their recipe page as well – I get so overwhelmed and can never pick which recipe to try out!
Cranberries + walnuts are just made for each other. And when they’re paired with a whole wheat carb? It’s purrfection. I am all about the filling to dough ratio and this bread is no exception. Every bite has a sweet cranberry and crunchy walnut along with the slight molasses flavor. Of course it’s delish on its own, but everyone knows life is better with a little butter.
I still ate it. I still loved it.
Can we still be friends? I’ll bring you bread. (that was not dropped in a puddle:)
- 3 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 tbsp vital wheat gluten
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 package Red Star Platinum Yeast
- 1/8 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 1 tbsp dried orange peel
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
- Warm the water, milk, and sugar to lukewarm. Add the yeast and let it sit until it's nice and foamy, about 5-10 minutes. While that's happening you can chop your walnuts and get the rest of the ingredients ready.
- Add the yeast mixture, oil, and molasses to the bowl of a stand mixer. Add in the flour, gluten, salt, and orange peel. Mix for 2-3 minutes then add the cranberries and nuts. Keep kneading for about 5 more minutes.
- Once the dough has come together take it out of the bowl and knead with your hands until the dough is nice and elastic. Form it into a ball then place in an oiled bowl. Place the bowl, covered with a dish towel or plastic wrap, into a warm place to rise until the dough has doubled, from 1-2 hours.
- Take dough out of bowl and knead a few times. Form it into either a ball of loaf and place into what you are baking it in. I used my dutch oven and made a round loaf. Let it rise for about 40 minutes until it's puffy. Bake in a 375F oven with the lid on for 20-30 minutes. Take the lid off and bake for 5-10 more minutes or until it's golden brown. If you are baking a loaf, bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes.
- Let cool otherwise it might be gummy. Slice and enjoy!
- I stored my uneaten bread in the fridge. I love it toasted and spread with coconut oil!