Sunflower Bread
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This is the standard bread we keep around the house, adapted from a recipe in Reader’s Digest Great Recipes for Good Health. I bake four loaves at a time, slice it and freeze. Homemade bread goes stale within a few days. We prefer toast to bread, so we keep it frozen and use a slice at a time. Craig bought me a fancy toaster with a defrost setting for my birthday one year. It was originally $100 at Williams-Sonoma. Apparently this was too expensive even for W-S customers, so Craig got it for $30.

  • 4 ½ t active dry yeast (or two packets)

  • 4 c warm water (110ºF)

  • 1/3 c honey

  • 4 c white flour

  • 8 c whole wheat flour

  • 2 t salt

  • 1 t black pepper

  • ¼ c olive oil

  • ¾ c toasted sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds or a mixture

Dissolve yeast in ½ c of the water. Combine the remaining water, honey, salt, oil, pepper, and 2 c of the white flour. Stir with a wire whisk. When the yeast gets bubbly, add to the dough. Add the rest of the white flour and a little of the whole wheat at a time. When the dough starts to come away from the edge of the bowl, turn out onto a floured work surface and knead for about 5 minutes. Add more flour as necessary.

Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with a damp dishtowel. Let rise until doubled in bulk 1 ½ to 2 hours. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently work in the seeds. Shape into four round loaves and transfer to two greased cookie sheets. Cover with a damp dish towel and let rise for 40 minutes. Bake at 350ºF for 35 minutes. Let cool completely before slicing.

Yields 4 loaves