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FOOD : With Loaves of Love : An Oat Wheat Bread Recipe From the Villa Park Women's League

July 10, 1988

OF TINY Villa Park's population of 7,000, about 400 are members of the Villa Park Women's League, which supports many community projects. One fund-raiser found the group collecting, testing and evaluating more than 1,000 recipes for a cookbook to be titled "The Loving Spoons of Villa Park" ($17, self-published). More than 500 recipes eventually made it into the book.

The offbeat title, according to the introduction, was chosen to complement that of their first cookbook, "The Tasting Spoons of Villa Park." The "love spoons" referred to in the second book's title are intricately carved wooden spoons that young 16th-Century Welshmen gave their sweethearts as symbols of their love and devotion.

This book is filled with the type of good home-style recipes one cannot have too many of. It's available at the Villa Park Pharmacy and the Villa Park Library or by mail (with a check for $19 that includes $2 postage and handling) to Cookbook, 18451 Jocotal Ave., Villa Park 92667.

Among the recipes is this one for a stick-to-your-ribs Oat Wheat Bread. OAT WHEAT BREAD 4 to 5 cups bread flour 2 teaspoons salt 2 packages dry yeast 1 cup water 1/2 cup honey cup butter 1 cup cream-style cottage cheese 2 eggs 1 cup whole-wheat flour 1/2 cup rolled oats 1 cup chopped nuts

Generously grease 2 9x5-inch loaf pans and set aside. In large bowl of electric mixer, combine 2 cups bread flour, salt and yeast. Blend well. In medium saucepan, heat water, honey, butter and cottage cheese until very warm (120 degrees) but not bubbly. Add warm liquid and eggs to flour mixture. Blend at low speed until moistened. Beat 3 minutes at medium speed.

By hand, stir in whole-wheat flour, oats, nuts and enough additional bread flour to form soft dough. Turn dough out onto floured surface and knead about 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in greased bowl and cover loosely. Let rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Punch dough down. Divide into 2 equal parts and mold into balls. Cover with inverted bowl and allow to rest 15 minutes. Shape into loaves and place in prepared pans. Cover with towel and let rise in warm place until dough is light and doubled in size, about 1 hour. Bake at 375 degrees 35 to 45 minutes, until loaves sound hollow when lightly tapped. Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire rack. Bread is very good toasted. Makes 2 loaves.

Food styled by Norman Stewart; prop styling by RoseMary Aguayo; props courtesy of Richard Mulligan Antiques and the Hand Prop Room

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