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Phyllis’ Bread from Deaf Smith Cookbook

    A perfect loaf

    A great recipe from an outstanding book

    Photos by Gayle Hurmuses and Gisela McKay

    This recipe comes from the Deaf Smith Country Cookbook, by Marjorie Winn Ford, Susan Hillyard, and Mary Faulk Kock, and is one of my favourites.


    When making truly whole wheat bread, you’re going to have to accept that it’s simply not going to raise to the same degree of fluffiness as white bread.

    It’s especially important to make sure to knead it fully without going too far.

    One thing that I watch for when kneading, to know when to stop, is when the outer layer of the raw kneaded bread begins to tear, rather than simply stretch.

    While you don’t want to under-knead bread, you also don’t want to overdo it either. Gluten is a living thing and gets tired of working, just like you do.

    A perfect loaf

    Phyllis’ Bread

    Servings: 2 Loaves


    • 2 1/2 Cups Water Warm (about 100ºF)
    • 2 Tbsp Dry Active Yeast
    • 3 Tbsp Oil
    • 4 Tbsp Raw Honey or Unsulfered Molasses
    • 6 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
    • 1 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt

    Optional ingredient

    • 1 Cup Flax Meal To REPLACE one cup of flour


    • Yeast and Water
      Dissolve the yeast in the warm water in a large bowl.
    • Oil and molasses added to the yeast.
      Add the oil and molasses.
    • Using the whisk
      Adding it a cup at a time, beat the flour into the liquids with a whisk until it stiffens, switching to a wooden spoon until it becomes firmer, then use your hands.
    • All flour added
      Mix well, adding a bit more flour if needed. to keep it from being truly sticky. Ultimately, it will pull away from the sides of the bowl, which will still have some dough sticking to it, but will be mostly clean.
    • Kneading the bread
      Knead the dough for 8 – 10 minutes.
    • Measure the bread size at this time.
      Form the bread into a smooth ball and cover, in the bowl. Note the size of the bread at this time.
    • Bread in oven with light on to rise
      Cover and let rise in a warm, draft free spot, until doubled. This should take about 90 minutes.
    • Measure the bread size after the raising.
      Check to confirm that the loaf has roughly doubled in size.
    • Cutting the dough
      Cut the dough into two equal parts to shape into loaves or rolls.
    • Folding the loaf
      Shape the loaf by pulling the piece into a rectangle and then folding the edges under.
    • Putting the loaf into the pan
      Place the loaf into a pan (if you want to put seeds on, this is the time to do it) and cover with a cloth for the final raising.
    • Cut into 16 equal pieces
      For rolls, cut either or both halves of the dough into16 equal pieces. Begin by cutting into 4 equal parts, then each of those into 2, and then cut those again.
    • Form each piece into a ball.
      Form each of these pieces into a small ball.
    • Place the pieces in even rows of 4 into an 8" x 8" pan.
      Place pieces in even rows into an 8″ square pan (or if you are making the entire recipe into rolls, put all 32 pieces into a 9″ x 13″ pan).
    • Cover and let raise again for about 1 hour.
    • Phylilis' Bread, Baking.
      Bake in a preheated oven set to 400º for the first 10 minutes, then lower the heat to 350º and cook for another 20 minutes.
    • Phyllis Bread finished rolls!
      Take out the rolls about 5 minutes earlier than the loaf.
    • Phyllis Bread Mmmmm


    One smart  thing to do that I really should have done this time, was put a piece of greased kraft paper or parchment at the bottom of the pan.
    It’s easy to loosen the bread from the sides with a knife, but even with a greased pan, sometimes the bottom of the loaf will stick to the surface…which sadly happened to me this time.
    Truly unfortunate, with this being one of my cosmetically best whole wheat loaves ever! So, there’s a small flap torn off of the bottom of the bread. Still tastes excellent though.
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

    2 thoughts on “Phyllis’ Bread from Deaf Smith Cookbook”

    1. Thanks for sharing Phyllis Bread! I found the Deaf Smith Country Cookbook when I was newly married (the first time), found Phyllis, and made bread regularly. Lost the book in too many moves, but never forgot the name of the bread. I modified the recipe this time, used 1/2 white flour for a lighter loaf, but still…. Oh So Good!

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