Bread making for the domestically challenged..

So, like's expensive lately. Have you noticed? No? Well it is. Also?..everything else.

And you know the eveeeeiil high fructose corn syrup that everyone is getting hysterical about although none of us are quite sure why, but we know it is bad. BAD by golly, and that is enough to know.

Anyway, even though all of us have been eating it for years and years and years in pretty much every form and so did our parents and all that blah blah blah... it is way too evil for our little precious ones. So now that I know that this evil is out there and that I must protect my innocents from it I have noticed that it is pretty much in everything. Including the nice wholesome looking 100% wholewheat bread with the Amish wagon on the front that I buy from Kroger! 100% Wholewheat bread WITH an Amish wagon picture?? What the??? Is nothing sacred people?!

Ok so what have we surmised so far. Bread. Expensive. Also: Everything Else. Back to bread: If you buy it from Kroger (or anywhere else) it is full of deadly poisons that will eventually probably kill you. Maybe. Best we don't be taking that chance.

Which naturally leads us to: Ta-daaaaah! D'OH! What every good Mormon woman should have been doing since she was a Sunbeam: Making Your Own Bread.

I have always had a major mental block about bread making (similar to the mental block I have about everything else that goes on in the kitchen) but bread making was especially major and for this I blame my mother. Otherwise very competent in the kitchen, she always seemed to have a bit of a fear of the making of the bread and since she was otherwise so capable, I decided it was impossible for one so culinary-ly handicapped as myself. But then due to the poverty and fear of the poisons, I faced my fears. Or more like I decided that there was nothing to lose.

So I tried it. And I failed miserably. I ended up with bread that might have been acceptable for a Seder but very little else. It was yummy, but very very flat.

But then I tried it again! The very next day. And I succeeded spectacularly. Spectacularly I say. I called my mom in South Africa immediately. She was astounded.

I got a recipe from my friend Amy who is not afraid of stuff that happens in the kitchen. Since I do not have the pre-requisite to be a good Mormon housewife within my unrighteous possession:

she suggested I use my bread machine. That she gave me. ('Cos she is such a good Mormon woman that she has a spare). So basically you double the recipe mix it all up in the bread machine on the dough cycle, wait for it to rise, then divide it, roll it out, make it into nice little loaf shapes (that's my favourite part), put them in pans, let it rise some more (how about that rising!), bake it and then if you are like me, you eat it all in one sitting. With butter and honey.

WARNING :Homemade bread is not at all like store-bought bread. It is dangerously good and it is pretty much a crime not to eat it when it is warm, which requires eating it in all in half a day. Isn't it purty? It smells even better then it looks. The smell alone is enough to make you consider becoming a professional bread maker.

Here is the recipe for Whole-wheat bread that even the most domestically troubled amongst us can handle:
1 1/3 C water (warm-hot)
5 Tbsp. melted butter
2 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt
1 2/3 C bread flour
2 1/3 C whole wheat
5 Tbsp dry milk
2 1/2 tsp yeast

*Choose the dough cycle or use your righteous mixer until it is very thoroughly mixed. Amy uses her righteous mixer for about 15-20 mins. Then you let it rise in there (covered) for about an hour or until it looks about 2x as much as it did when you chucked everything in. Amazing how that yeast works!
*Divide in two. Roll out into a rectangle and roll into a loaf, place seam side down in the pans.
* Cover the pans and let them rise some more. I put them in a warm (but turned off) oven with a pretty little cloth over, (it really should be pretty). Let them rise for an additional 20 mins.
*Bake for 15 mins at 425 degrees.
*Go for an extra long run

BONUS: Just for you my lovely readers! An even easier recipe!

Honey Oat Bread
1 C water
1/4 C honey
1/4 C softened butter
1 1/4 C wheat flour
1 C bread flour
1/2 C quick oats
1 t. salt
2 t. yeast

Bake 350 for 40-50 mins
I did not double this recipe and let my bread machine do all the work overnight. It was perfect and yummy. My kids especially approved and they are very weird about bread.

If you have questions do not hesitate to inquire. There is no kitchen based question too basic for a person like me. If you wonder, trust me people I have wondered. And then I asked Amy. And now I have the answer. So ask away.


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Buzzings of a Queen Bee! said...

Thanks for this tip...i am going to give it a try!

Lynn said...

Great post. I love making bread. Thanks.

Sharon said...

Oh man! I've gotta try these. I wonder if I can time all that stuff that happens in the kitchen to finish at the same time....That seems like it is asking a lot, doesn't it?

Genny said...

Found you through Rocks in My Dryer...glad I stopped by. You have a beautiful blog!

Jim and Reenie said...

Don't know if you got my email, but we would love to hear more about South Africa from you and again we look forward to meeting your mother when we arrive in SA on 12/1.
Elder & Sister Von Stetten

Jendeis said...

What about freezing the dough or baked bread for later use? Any luck with that?

Jennifer said...

I'm so glad you've turned to the dark side LOL I've been regularly doing the bread thing for the last six months or so. Organic wholesome bread was getting way too pricey for us. I always keep a loaf in the fridge(tropical climate makes this important to do) and the rest in the freezer until we need it. Love bread making day(thursday for us) It smells sooooo good!!

Mom2fur said...

I love to bake bread! I don't have an ABM, but the dough hook on my Kitchenaid works wonders. No way I'd do it if I had to do all that kneading by hand, LOL! Your recipes look great. I'm going to copy them and give them a try soon.
BTW, HF Corn Syrup is pretty much just sugar and no worse for you. The real problem isn't the HFCS itself but that it sneaks into EVERYTHING. Most anything is okay in moderation, but for heaven's sake, take a look at store labels and you'll be shocked just how much of that stuff is out there. It's even in salad dressing! If you stay with processed food all the time, there's no way you can ingest the stuff 'in moderation.' So, a bit here and there won't kill you, but doing the homemade thing is a great way to avoid too much.

Mary H. said...

You are a great writer. Very funny! I'm going to have to try these recipes.