Do you make your own bread?
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Many years ago I used to bake my own bread. I would bake bread once a week.
I did not have a bread maker. I just did it the old fashioned way! Lots of kneading the dough and letting it rise.
But since my boys have all grown and gone out on their own, I no longer bake bread!
I bake our bread because of food allergies...my favorite recipe is for a "french bread" - I substitute the butter for oil (olive, vegaetable, canola, etc) because we can't eat dairy. I LOVE this because I can mix different things into the dough - I can add raisins and cinammon to make a cinnamon/raisin bread, pizza seasoning and pepperoni for a "pizza bread" (you can add cheese to this to make it a real pizza bread).
1 cup + 3 tbs water (about 90*)
3 1/2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 tbs butter or oil
2 tsp active dry yeast or 1 1/2 tsp bread machine yeast
You can either make the dough in a bread machine, or :
mix the yeast and water in warmed mixing pan until yeast has been activated, add remaining ingredients until mixed thoroughly. Use a dough hook (I have a kitchen aide stand mixer) and need for three minutes.
Place dough bowl in warm, draft free place and allow to rise for about 1 1/2 hours. (I put the dough in a bowl, then place the bowl in a second bowl of hot water). Punch dough down, and allow to rest on floured surface for 15 minutes.
Roll into 15X12 rectangle (I actually split the dough to make two smaller loaves)
You can add topings to it once you've rolled it out flat. Then roll the dough tighly from the long side, seal and place seam side down on greased baking pan sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover and let rise in warm, draft free place for 45 minutes. With sharp knife, make 3 or 4 inch deep cuts in loaf, combine egg white with water (I use a bit of olive oil spray) and brush the top of the loaf. Bake in preheated, 375*oven about 40 minutes or until golden brown.
I haven't baked in a few years - the (now) 56-year-old Kitchen Aid mixer I inherited from my grandmother ground to a halt, and a new mixer is a better idea than fixing the old one. Now I just need to get it!
Mostly I bake challah, the traditional Jewish braided bread - I picked up where grandma left off (someone in the family had to), though I had to reconstruct the recipe - the version she donated to my aunt's congregation wasn't the one she actually used.
Back when I was just out of school and sharing a Brooklyn brownstone (and didn't have a mixer), I made Anadama bread. It has a low-density dough, so mixing and kneading by hand wasn't a chore. Corn meal, molasses, white flour, yeast, salt, water. A very simple, brown bread with a bit of texture from the corn meal.
Jennifer has a bread machine that she used for a while, a bunch of years ago. The results were fine, but two people can only eat so much.
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We have a bread maker, I'm not sure the brand - it's old, like 12 to 15 years old.
I used to make our bread by hand all of the time until DH bought the bread maker. I honestly don't really like it, but every time I didn't use it DH would ask "Why didn't you use the bread maker I bought for you?" (I didn't ask for it, nor want it). So, after a few years we reverted back to store bought bread. Until I took a few classes in Chemistry, Micro-Biology, Nutrition, etc. and really did not like what I now know the ingredients in store-bought bread is.
DH makes all of our bread, I don't know the recipes he uses, but he has one that is an onion bread and tastes almost exactly like Hawaiian Bread! He uses the bread maker.
If I decide to make bread, it's by hand, rising and all that - and I use my Kitchen Aid to knead.
I have been using my new bread machine, and we are loving it! I especially like that I can make a hot fresh loaf in under an hour, and we actually like that recipe better than the single longer recipe I have tried. Looking forward to trying different recipes!