This weekend was wonderful. Even though it was (really) cold, it was bright and sunny, not dreary and gray. School isn’t too busy yet (and probably wont be..3Litis much?) so the weekends are actually something to enjoy. My toe is almost healed so I was able to workout on both Saturday and Sunday (and I went for a run OUTSIDE tonight and FROZE but it felt great). I also cooked and baked up a storm. On Saturday, Julia suggested that we take the boys to a FREE wine tasting and then they came over while I made Mexican Meatball Soup. Wonderful recipe but I didn’t take any pictures (whoops!). I am excited because I have two portions frozen for a quick weeknight dinner, one of which we heated up tonight. YUM! Then I baked up some Snickerdoodles really quick to take to an apartment warming party. I don’t like to show up empty handed ;-) But the real accomplishment this weekend was baking bread. Real sandwich bread.
I can’t believe how easy it was to make a real homemade loaf of sandwich bread and how few ingredients are involved.
Mix 2/3 bread flour with 1/3 wheat. Don’t you love my flour canisters? I really do. I have 4 of them and kinda wish I had a few more.
It is true that you can only buy powdered milk in massive quantities (at least this was true at Treasure Island) but I hear there are other good recipes (granola at Homesick Texan to name one) to use some of it up. Anyone in Chicago need some powdered milk? I can hook ya up ;-P
After Ethel (my KitchenAid) did the mixing and kneading, you let it rest for and hour or so until it doubles. Then comes the fun part of stretching it out into a rectangle…
…then shaping it and rolling it to the proper loaf shape.
After a 2nd rise and 45 mins in the oven…out came a loaf of bread!
I was a little concerned because it felt rock hard on the outside, but really the “crust” layer was perfect. It made a wonderful sandwich yesterday and I enjoyed a slice tonight with a little melted sharp cheader to go along with the leftover soup.
And the best part about it? I know EXACTLY what went into it. No partially hydrogenated this or xanthan gum that. Just flour, yeast, salt, sugar, powdered milk, water and a little time. Amazing.
Give it a try for yourself. It really does give you a feeling of triumph and accomplishment.
The recipe can be found here. Now I have another cook book to add to the endless wish list :)