|Makes 2 8-inch diameter loaves.
2 teaspoons sugar
2 packets (or 2 tablespoons) active dry yeast
4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
4 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons melted butter
3/4 cup milk at room temperature
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 teaspoon aniseed
1/4 cup corn meal
1. In a bowl that will hold at least 2 cups, dissolve sugar in 1 cup of luke warm water. Stir until it dissolves. Add the yeast and stir until it dissolves. Set the mixture in a warm place and allow to bubble up until it doubles in volume. (The amount of time it takes to double depends upon the freshness of your yeast. It could take just 5 minutes - but be patient.)
2. Combine four cups of the all-purpose flour with 3 cups of the whole wheat flour in a large bowl. Add the salt. When the yeast mixture is ready add it and the milk to the flour mixture. Mix the dough with a wooden spoon adding water until it begins to come together. (it could take as much as one cup) The dough should be sticky and wet. Scoop it out on to a well-floured surface and let it rest uncovered for 15 - 20 minutes.
3. Begin kneading in the remaining cup of whole wheat flour. You may not need the entire cup, or you may need a little more. The resulting dough should be stiff and springy. Continue kneading for 10 minutes. Add the caraway and the aniseed during the last stages of kneading.
4. Divide the dough into two equal parts. Place them one at a time in a bowl coated with the melted butter, turning to insure that the entire loaf is coated.
5. Form the dough into two round, dome-shaped loaves, about 2 inches thick in the center. Place the dough on baking sheets that have been sprinkled with corn meal. Sprinkle the top of each loaf as well.
6. Cover the loaves with damp lint-free cloths and place in a warm spot to rise until doubled in size. (about one hour - but again be patient.)
7. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Before placing the loaves in the oven pierce the top of each several times with a fork. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes. A well-baked loaf should sound hollow when thumped with your finger. Serve warm.