Orange-Buckwheat Milk Bread - 9 Grains Original

orange buckwheat bread

The 9 Grain flours make this crossover treat a tasty surprise. It's a yeast bread softened with a tangzhong and brightened with orange peel and buckwheat, with enough sweetness to pass as dessert and enough savory to crave for lunch.

This recipe lends itself to individualization. You can intensify the buckwheat flavor by extending the sponge ferment time - 12 hours is the maximum. You can use more, or less, orange zest. You can use another grain flour for the tangzhong - for example, amaranth. Using more yeast promotes a faster rise and more open crumb. More butter makes the bread more brioche-like, and buttermilk instead of milk both sharpens the taste and tenderizes the crumb. Have fun!

Yield: one, 14-ounce bread loaf
Time to make: 30 minutes active. 90 minutes proof and an hour oven dwell.
Tools needed: Spice or coffee grinder. Measuring cups and spoons and/or kitchen scale. 1 quart saucepan. Whisk. 2 small bowls. Medium bowl. Stand mixer with paddle attachment. Zest plane. 2 inch X 3 inch X 7 inch bread pan.  Plastic spatula.


1 1/8 cup (163 grams) "Corona" flour blend (see below)
2 teaspoons xanthan gum
5/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
1 Tablespoon (18 grams) granulated sugar
3/8 cup (118 grams) brown rice Tangzhong (see below)
100 Ml whole milk
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 1/2 Tablespoons (42 grams) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature and cut into half-inch cubes

Tangzhong ingredients

1/3 cup (45 grams) medium-grain brown rice
120 Ml whole milk
120 Ml water

To make tangzhong:

Place brown rice into a spice or coffee grinder and run for about 30 seconds, shaking once, to make a coarse meal.  Measure water and milk into 1-quart saucepan. Add the coarse brown rice meal. Whisk to blend, then place over medium-high heat. Stirring smoothly and slowly with whisk, stir until mixture thickens to consistency of custard. Remove from heat and transfer to a small bowl. Wash saucepan and whisk immediately before ingredients have set. Set tangzhong aside to cool. It will form a skin and thicken. You will have more than needed; excess may be refrigerated for up to a week.

Sponge ingredients

1/3 cup buckwheat groats or flour
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
1/8 teaspoon salt
75 Ml water

To make sponge:

Make the sponge: Using the spice grinder, grind the buckwheat groatsto a coarse meal. Place in a medium bowl with sugar, yeast and salt, and whisk to blend. Add the water and stir until thoroughly blended. Allow to proof at room temperature for 90 minutes.

Corona flour blend

1 part (1 cup) sorghum flour;
1/2 part (1/2 cup) GF rolled oats;
1/2 part (1/2 cup) tapioca starch
1/4 part (1/4 cup) millet flour


Place all ingredients in a large zip-lock bag and seal tightly. Shake, twist and roll until flour is thoroughly blended. Allow to rest until dust has settled before opening.


1)   Make the tangzhong and the sponge (see column at left). Prepare a 2 inch X 3 inch X 7 inch bread loaf pan by greasing and dusting with GF flour. Heat oven to 350.

2) Place the Corona flour blend (see column at left), the xanthan gum, the sugar, the yeast and the salt into stand mixer bowl.  Mix on low-medium speed until ingredients are thoroughly blended. Add the milk, the sponge, the tangzhong and the orange zest to the dry ingredients. Mix on middle speed until all ingredients are thoroughly wet - about 30 seconds. Allow dough to rest for 5 minutes. With mixer running at medium speed, add the butter one piece at a time, and continue running the mixer until all butter is integrated into the dough, about 1 minute.

3)    Turn the dough out into the prepared loaf pan. Press dough into pan to fit, smooth top with a wet spatula, cover loosely with a towel and set aside to proof: 90 minutes at 75 F or 45 minutes at 90 F, or until dough doubles in size. 

5) Bake bread for 60 minutes, or until top is nut-brown. Turn out onto a cooling rack and allow to cool completely before slicing and enjoying.