Oatmeal Sandwich Bread

Oats make a bread which is characteristically tender, moist and just slightly sweet, the perfect foil for sandwich fillings as disparate as peanut butter and Marshmallow Fluff or bologna and American cheese. And cinnamon toast made with oatmeal bread — the smell of toasted oats mingling with the heady aromas of cinnamon and melting butter — is enough to get anyone's day off to a very good start indeed.

Prep
15 mins
Bake
35 to 40 mins
Total
2 hrs 40 mins
Yield
1 loaf
Oatmeal Sandwich Bread

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, or in the bowl of an electric mixer, combine all of the ingredients, mixing to form a shaggy dough. Knead the dough by hand (10 minutes) or by mixer (5 minutes) until it's smooth. Want to make this dough with the help of your bread machine? See "tips," below.

  2. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, and allow it to rest for 1 hour; it'll become quite puffy, though it may not double in bulk.

  3. Gently deflate the dough, and transfer it to a lightly oiled work surface. Shape it into an 8" log.

  4. Place the dough in a lightly greased 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pan, cover the pan with loosely with lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until it's crested 1" to 2" over the rim of the pan. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.

  5. Bake the bread for 35 to 40 minutes, until a digital thermometer inserted into the center registers 190°F. If the bread appears to be browning too quickly, tent it with aluminum foil for the final 10 minutes of baking.

  6. Remove the bread from the oven, and turn it out of the pan onto a rack to cool. Store the bread well-wrapped, at room temperature, for several days; freeze for longer storage.

Tips from our Bakers

  • To make dinner or sandwich rolls: Replace the ground oats with an additional 1/2 cup (60g) bread flour. Divide the dough into 16 pieces (about 56g each) for dinner rolls, or nine pieces (about 100g each) for larger sandwich rolls. Roll each piece into a smooth ball. Place the dinner rolls in a lightly greased 9" square pan, or arrange the sandwich rolls on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover and let rise for 35 to 40 minutes, until noticeably puffy. While the rolls are rising, preheat the oven to 350°F. Brush the risen rolls with egg wash (1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon cold water) and sprinkle with oats. Bake for 21 to 24 minutes, until golden brown. Remove the rolls from the oven, and cool on a rack.

  • Why does this loaf contain both whole and ground rolled oats? Grinding a portion of the oats allows them to disperse more fully throughout the dough, lending it their humectant properties (in plain English, their ability to hold water, thus slowing down the bread's staling process). And leaving a portion of the oats whole gives the bread texture. All in all, the marriage of oats and wheat flour is a happy one, and a boon to sandwich and toast lovers everywhere.
  • Traditionally, oatmeal bread is sweetened with molasses, which gives it a dark color and pronounced burnt-sugar flavor. We choose to lighten the effect here by using brown sugar and honey.
  • Want to make this loaf with the help of your bread machine? Place all of the ingredients into the pan of your machine, program the machine for Manual or Dough, and press Start. About 10 minutes before the end of the second kneading cycle, check the dough and adjust its consistency as necessary with additional flour or water; the finished dough should be soft and supple. Shape the loaf and bake it in your regular oven, as directed above.

  • If you prefer oatmeal bread sweetened the traditional way, with molasses, simply substitute 3 tablespoons molasses for the brown sugar and honey. The resultant bread will be darker in color, and slightly stronger tasting.
  • Rolled oats are easily ground using a blender or food processor; a mini-processor is the perfect tool, because of the small amount being processed.