Well, the book calls it 'Five-Grain Bread'.
So, I guess to tell the story behind the story, a little explanation is in order.
WARNING: Weird Story Ahead - Not for the Squeamish!!! Skip ahead to the place it says 'WARNING ALERT OVER' if you would like.
My Mother suffered from some delusional issues - I guess we all suffer from delusional issues - but my family as a group suffered from our mother's delusions. And trust me, there are plenty of stories I could back that statement up with. But she had a lot of wonderful qualities as well, and I would not presume to sum up her existence on a simple bread blog.
But to be certain, she was really into conspiracies, alternate medicine, chiropractors, homeopathy, Communists, religions, yadda, yadda, yadda...
But she was also one hell of a good cook. So much so that she cooked on the river barges towards the end of her life, and was sought-after as a cook. A Seriously Good Cook.
But, to the point of this story, she had read somewhere that we all needed our intestines cleaned out. She was convinced that there was at least 20 years of accumulated steak residing in my stomach, releasing toxins that would most certainly make me go bald, renounce her religion du jour, and maybe even cause me to (gasp!) get married. It was simply her duty to render aid that would assist me to get it cleaned out. Now, she knew that there was no way that I would go along with several methods she and some of the siblings would use, such as... ...uh, No. Not going there.
Let's just say that she had several other ways of ensuring intestinal cleanliness and let it go at that.
But she figured that she could get to us with food. She started to doctor the food with psyllium seed ( the plant that is the basis for Metamucil) and flax seeds. Both were effective means to obtain their intended result, and both means would be accompanied by a chorus of, well, earthy sounds. Oh the stories I want to tell... ...the same stories I have tried so hard to forget.
Well, I tell you all that much of my long-past personal life, just to tell you the reasons that I hate flax seed. I hate psyllium seed. Matter of fact, I am pretty squeamish about anything that might change the daily routine of my stomach in such a dramatic fashion.
So when the Mellow Bakers came out with the five grain bread, I counted on my fingers the types of grains I knew were 'safe'. When I got to the Fifth Element ( whoaa - that was a sci-fi Freudian slip!) of Hamelman's book 'Bread', I stopped in my tracks. There is no way that I am using flax seed, I thought.
Then I remembered, and smiled: We are Seriously Mellow here! Yay!!!
'WARNING ALERT OVER'
So I used some spelt instead of flax and moved along. I also sprinkled the top of the loaf with sesame, but that was mostly by habit, not design. And it did not hurt anything, in fact if was pretty complimentary.
For a highly grained bread, this one was a surprise. It uses enough AP flour and yeast that you get a really nice ferment that is easy to make, and actually pretty quick to make. I did not have the courage to make a free-form loaf, and the dough had the consistency of a sourdough wort-mother with grains tossed in for good measure. It could have handled it OK, but it would have looked a lot like focaccia bread.
I eyed the finished loaf warily, not too sure that this was going to be posted as an August bread or a 'Bread Disaster'. Once it cooled slightly, I tried it and I was quite pleasantly surprised. While it is hardly a favorite, I will keep it in mind for the next time we get a visitor or neighbor that wants a multi-grained bread, but does not have more than a half day to wait.
And when you add Sister Demeter's Cherry Jelly - it becomes superb.