100% whole wheat bread machine dilemma
I have plenty of recipes for bread machines and for ovens, so I'm not looking for a recipe. I'm looking for advice on how to *fix* a recipe.
My roommate turned 99% vegan 6 months ago, plus this E3 silly craze so he won't eat anything unless it says "whole" or "brown" on it. But I think he's tired of paying $6 for a loaf of all-natural, dolphin safe, free range, sprouted toenail bread - only to have it mold up on him 3 days later. Neither of us have the time or the inkling to make scratch 100% whole wheat loaves during the week, but I *do* have a zojirushi mini that I use periodically for regular style bread and mixed grain loaves.
So, I took it as a challenge to come up with a 100% whole wheat loaf that tastes good and that he can slice for sandwiches that has no cow milk (soy is fine), minimal added fat, a touch of maple syrup, and it can all be dumped in the bread machine. I adapted a recipe that works great in loaf pan in the oven, but fails miserably in the vertically-oriented zojirushi. The result is dense, with the consistency (and taste) of a bran muffin: delicious, but not 'sliceable' because it crumbles.
I've tried tweaking moisture content, yeast, salt, etc., all to no avail. It rises beautifully in the bucket, but shrinks considerably during baking. The only thing I can think of is that there just isn't enough gluten to counteract the bran in the whole wheat he bought for me to work with. Am I missing something? Should I just try adding a tbsp or two of vital wheat gluten (which I'd have to go out and buy)? I don't normally use soy milk or maple syrup in baking; could they be the culprit? Or, is there a new age trick like adding xantham gum or lecithin to the mix?
ww flour: 285 g
soy milk: 100 g
water: 85 g
maple: 20 g
oil: 10 g
salt: 5 g
yeast: 1.5 tsp
The cycle runs 3:40 total, 20 min each for 'prep' and kneading and the remaining three hours split, more or less hourly, between two rises and a bake.