Present at the Ranch

Rancho La Puerta's blog about healthy and happy living.

Category Archives: Recipes

Tecate Ranch Whole-Wheat Bread

Rancho La Puerta Whole Wheat Bread

“How to make bread is not as important as what goes into it,” wrote Professor Edmond Szekely in a Rancho La Puerta cookbook of long ago. “In other words, the ingredients are what decide whether bread is indeed the ‘staff of life’ of the Bible, or the sickly commercial white loaf found in the supermarket.” Since the Ranch’s earliest days, a hearty whole-wheat bread has sustained guests. Taking a loaf home on the last day became a tradition-a way to, literally, “take The Ranch home” in addition to your reinvigorated mind, body and spirit! Here’s the classic recipe. 


  • 3 cups of warm water 105-110°F
  • ¼ cup of wild-sage honey
  • 1 packet of active dry yeast ( ¼ oz)
  • ½ cup of cold-pressed safflower or sunflower oil
  • 8 ½ – 9 ½ cups of stone-ground whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup of wheat-bran flakes
  • 2 tbsp plus 1 tsp of poppy or sesame seeds
  • 1 ½ tsp of sea salt
  • 1 egg white, beaten (for glaze)


  1. In a medium bowl combine water and honey.  Sprinkle over yeast; stir to dissolve.  Let stand 5 minutes or until frothy.  Stir in oil if preparing dough by hand; knead thoroughly to ensure lightness and as much gluten as possible.
  2. In electric-mixer bowl or large bowl, combine yeast mix with oil, 8 ½ cups flour, bran, 2 tbsp seeds and salt.  Knead dough in electric mixer fitted with dough hook.  (Or knead by hand about 10 minutes on work surface.)  If dough is very sticky, add ¼ cup flour at a time; continue to knead 10-15 minutes or until dough pulls away from sides of mixing bowl and is smooth and elastic.
  3. Shape dough into ball.  Lightly brush large bowl with vegetable oil.
  4. Add dough, turning to coat surface.  Cover with damp kitchen towel; let dough rise about 1 hour until volume doubles.
  5. Brush lightly with oil two 9 x 5 x 2” loaf pans.  Punch down dough; divide in half.  Knead until smooth.  Shape into loaf pans.  Make 1/8” lengthwise slash on each loaf.  Let rise about 45 minutes until volume doubles.
  6. Brush tops with beaten egg white; sprinkle with remaining seeds.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Bake 35-40 minutes or until loaves sound hollow and golden brown on top.  Remove from pans.  Cool completely on racks before slicing.
  9. Makes 2 loaves, or 50 ½ -inch slices
  10. To freeze, wrap sliced loaves in plastic bags and keep up to 2 months.

Enjoy more Ranch recipes!



Lobster and Shrimp Paella

Longer days are almost here and our Lobster and Shrimp Paella recipe is the perfect choice to ring in warmer evening dinners outside.  This beautiful and delicious recipe is taken from our cookbook, Ranch cookbook, Cooking with the Seasons at Rancho Puerta by Deborah Szekely, Deborah Schneider and Robert … Continue reading


Gluten Free Coconut Almond Cookies

Gluten Free Coconut Almond Cookies

In addition to the delicious Grilled Fish Tacos and Pineapple Salsa Fresca in the Taco y Taco class I attended last week, Gluten Free Coconut Almond Cookies were served.  I’ve had these cookies many times at our cooking school, La Cocina Que Canta, and they … Continue reading



Butternut Squash Flan Recipe

Are you looking for a unique alternative to traditional pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving season?  The Butternut Squash Flan recipe from Cooking with the Seasons at Rancho La Puerta: Recipes from the World-Famous Spa may be just what you’re searching for. Traditional flan is creamy, rich, … Continue reading


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