Thursday, January 28, 2010

my first crack at making "real" bread

I am a self-professed yeast-a-phobic. I love to cook. I love to bake. I'm pretty good at both, make mistakes here and there, but I consider myself a good cook. But when it comes to making breads and anything that has to do with yeast? I've steered clear. I don't know what it is. Maybe it hapened back in my high school cooking class. Maybe it was these cookings shows on the Food Network that make everything seem "so easy" when meanwhile they're using ingredients that I can't find within a 200 mile radius of my house. Whatever it was, it made me fearful to make anything with yeast in it. If the water's too hot you'll kill the yeast. Too cold and it won't rise. Right??

Then I saw a recipe over here for Easy Artisan Bread thanks to Parker's mom. I won't bother reinventing the wheel and typing out the recipe here. Over at An Oregon Cottage she has easy to follow instructions.

So I got my pot over at Sam's Club for $39.99. Pretty red, isn't it??

My kitchen is taupe & sage green so it matches perfectly ;)Man is that thing heavy!! Even my husband went to lift the lid the other day and said "what do you have in this?" to which I replied "nothing!". He lifted the lid and said "man, that's a heavy pot!"

Anyway, back to the bread. I made my batch of dough on Sunday. It rose!! Woohoo!!! It was a neat "experiment" for the kids to watch, too. I'm always up for adding learning in to everyday things. So yesterday I took it out and baked the first batch of bread and this is how it turned out:

Not bad! Mine didn't look the same but not too bad for my first crack at making "real" bread, aka not from a box. The true test is whether or not it tastes good. Cause even if the loaf looks funky, if it tastes good it gets an A in my book! And guess what?? It tasted really good!!! It's a little on the heavier side and not light & airy so I don't know if I messed with it too much (hence, ruining all that great air inside) or if it's supposed to be that way.

Now, I used all white flour because that's all I had. But I'm planning on getting some wheat flour to make more next week. You know...if I ever get to the grocery store ;) I think this is going to be my "thing" to do on Sundays...make bread for the week. I'm just wondering if you can make the bread right after letting it rise rather than putting it in the fridge for a few days. I'll need to experiment with that a that I know I can do it!

Oh, and we took a quick break during baking to make some chocolate milk...

Happy baking people :) If you try it, let me know K??


Kellie said...

YUM YUM! Or you could make a dear friend a loaf...... I'm just saying. You might have a friend that likes no loves bread out there.

Jami @ An Oregon Cottage said...

Congratulations- I think that crust looks yummy-good! I'm so glad it worked for you. As for the texture, it seems the longer it's in the fridge, the more holes in the finished loaf, though it's never had lots of big holes like some breads for me.

And I often make a loaf right away (well, after the first 2 hour rise). It's just not as sour and not as light, but still good with the good crust. I've even been in a hurry and not given it the whole rise and it's been OK. It seems pretty flexible that way.

Sounds like you've conquered your fear of yeast. :-)

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