Breads / Breakfast/Tiffin items

100% Whole wheat sandwich loaf 2 – with orange juice

Whole wheat bread

My three-year-old boy brought his friend, the neighbour’s kid (a four-year-old fellow) to the balcony the other day when I was hurriedly clicking pictures of a loaf of bread I’d baked. It was amongst the last few pictures and I’d sliced up half the loaf and arranged the slices on a tray. Since the knife was nearby, I asked the boys to not get any closer, lest they hurt themselves.

As I was clicking, I could hear the neighbour’s kiddo whispering into my son’s ear: “Why is aunty taking pictures of that bread?”

“Because amma made it in the oven in the kitchen,” replied my son with an all-knowing air.

“No Ikshu. The bread comes from a shop. Only toast is made in the kitchen!”, the kiddo explained to my son.

“Noooo! My amma makes bread for me in the kitchen only,” sonny boy declared!

Can you imagine how I’d have been bursting with pride???  Moments like these are some of the most rewarding.

Whole wheat sandwich loaf

My son doesn’t always appreciate the whole wheat breads or cakes I bake for him. At times he asks me to buy them from the bakery down the road, just because the neighbours do that and he wants to do everything the way Shravan (the neighbour’s kid) does. He’s in the copycat mode right now. I normally try and explain to him that the bread at home will be tastier. If he still insists on shop-bought bread, I bribe him by saying I’ll add raisins to his bread, something the bread from the bakery won’t have, and then he normally agrees!

He also loves the mini loaves I bake for him in mini loaf pans. They are cute and give tiny 2.5 inch slices. They’re actually meant for teatime cakes and the like, but I love to bake yeasted loaves in it too. And the bread you see in the pictures has been baked in those.

The loaf I’m posting today is baked in those mini pans. They measure 5” x 3” x 2.5”. The loaf recipe is from Champa’s blog and it is amongst the best whole wheat bread you can make with Indian atta without any added gluten. This is the recipe I use most often after the Peter Reinhart recipe I posted yesterday. The bread uses orange juice for part of the liquid, which neutralises the bitter taste of whole wheat/atta and the little bit of baking soda acts with the citric juice and the yeast to give better rise to the bread, in the absence of any added gluten or in low-gluten flours. And no, you won’t detect the orange flavour in the final bread.

I use this recipe when I don’t have time to soak the grains and make polish like the previous recipe calls for. And I use this mainly when I’m making rich breads like cinnamon rolls. I adapt this recipe and use a combination of orange juice and cashew milk (since I bake only vegan; you could use regular dairy milk) in place of the water called for in the recipe and add orange and lime zest to the dough – it makes wonderfully soft and flavoured cinnamon rolls that are made completely with whole wheat flour! It can’t get any better than that!

If you have enough time on hand, you could also make whole wheat rolls with very little yeast and give it a longer rise like I’ve done in these hot chocolate rolls. All of these slow rise methods help the wheat in the dough rest for longer and thus bring out the taste of wheat much better.

whole wheat sandwich loaf

And just to remind you all, I’ll be blogging all this month with some blogger friends. We’re doing only baked goods through April and i’m going to be baking mostly breads and all of them with whole grains and organic ingredients! Check the end of the post for goodies baked by my friends and more about our blogging community

Here’s the basic recipe to make one tall 8” x 4” loaf or three mini loaves (5” x 3”). Read the notes at the end of the recipe for savoury variations

100% Whole Wheat loaf with Indian atta (no added gluten)


Whole Wheat Flour – 3 ½ cups (Start with 3 1/4 cups and use more if needed)

Orange Juice – ½ cup freshly squeezed^

Salt – 1 tsp

Jaggery – 2 TBSP
Oil – 2 TBSP
Water – 3/4 cup
Instant yeast – 2 tsp *
Baking Soda – 1/2 tsp


^You can also use ¼ cup of freshly squeezed lime juice mixed with ¼ cup of plain water instead

*If using active dry yeast, warm the ¾ cup of water and add honey and yeast to it. Mix well, cover and set aside till it bubbles up, about ten minutes. Add this along with orange juice to the flour


Stir together the wheat flour, salt, baking soda and yeast in a large mixing bowl. Add jaggery (see notes), water and orange juice into the bowl and mix with a large wooden spoon. Once the dough starts to form a ball, transfer to your kitchen counter and knead for ten to twelve minutes. You can add up to a quarter cup of water if the dough feels too dry. Add a tablespoon at a time

Oil the bowl in which you mixed up the dough. Do ensure that the bowl has enough room for the dough to double up! Move the kneaded dough back into the bowl and turn it around to coat with oil. Cover with a lid and set aside till it is almost double. Basically, the dough is ready to be shaped when you poke a finger into the risen dough and the indentation remains

Once well-risen. Shape the dough into a loaf

Grease an 8 inch by 4 inch loaf pan with oil. Place the shaped dough in the pan. Cover with a greasy sheet of plastic and set aside for the dough to rise higher than the pan.

You could preheat the oven to 190 deg C when the dough is nearing the rim of the pan.

Place in the pan in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Rotate the pan, reduce the temperature to 175 deg C and bake for another 15 minutes or so until the top is a nice golden-brown and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped at the bottom

Cool in the pan for a few minutes, then remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack completely


On jaggery – if using regular block jaggery dissolve it in the ¾ cup of water called for in the recipe and filter out impurities, if any. If using organic powdered jaggery, you can add it directly to the flour

You must cool a loaf completely to be able to slice it neatly without any crumbling

Store the completely cooled loaf in an airtight box to retain its freshness and to prevent it from drying out

For a loaf of bread made with Indian wheat flour, this one has an amazing crumb and texture and slices very well. And because it has no milk etc., it keeps well for 3-5 days at room temperature without getting too hard either

For a savoury loaf, you can add chopped green chillies and coriander leaves to the dough. Dried herbs and/or chilli flakes also work well. Adding chopped sautéed garlic to the dough makes a nice garlic loaf. If making a savoury loaf, add about a ¼ tsp of additional salt. I’ve tried all of these variations multiple times with very good results

22 thoughts on “100% Whole wheat sandwich loaf 2 – with orange juice

  1. Whole wheat with long fermentation time really brings out the flavor. Nice texture for a 100% whole wheat bread.

  2. Lol, Ikshu.. That was a cute conversation between the two boys. 🙂

    I have a set of 4 aluminium foil mini loaf pans and last fall when I baked a couple of loaves of breads I used those pans. I really liked the size and specially I was scaling down the recipes. In December bough metallic mini loaf pans and loving them. Mini loaves of bread look so cute.

  3. Definitely a proud moment…little Isku is so cute and I can imagine him talking that way…and ..appreciating good work right from childhood is also an art. The bread sounds so so good and the orange juice..well it surely must have given it a wonderful taste.

  4. That’s so adorable of your son. Love those cute mini slices. I have so far not baked a sandwich loaf with orange – jaggery combo. Seems like a keeper recipe going by your words.

  5. You gals are killing me with best bread recipes..going to change my marathon to bookmarked marathon.. Tons of bread recipes to try with in our team..Love this combo and cant imagine the taste and flavor of it!! Yumm

  6. Nandini, that’s a stunning loaf..wish you had shared how those mini tins look..:)..I love all Champa’s recipe and good that you have furthered made it easy for me to make…love that conversation of your son and his friend…:)

  7. Falling in love with all you post. Ikshu is so….sweet and I know how it feels to get such touching compliments from the lil kid. The hardwork you had put in research and giving homemade goodness to your family pays off. This bread looks so soft and great. Sure will try.

  8. The conversation you mentioned reminds me of the convo Sid and Ikshu had when we were in Foodology! And I can visualize little Ikshu talking to his friend! So Sweet :). And this is such a beautiful loaf of bread Nandini..Waiting for more 🙂

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