Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I got really tired sitting in the chair just now. In fact, I just woke up from a mini-nap 🙂
Even though I slept in today until about 10:30 am, it wasn’t a very satisfying sleep since Madeline was all over the bed, wanting to be fed! She is persistent!
Kimm was full of energy again and weeded for about FIVE hours. YIKES! I held off because my back is still bothering me. So instead, I decided to make a loaf of homemade bread.
I decided on this recipe from allrecipes.com. I did make a few alterations based on some of the comments. Basically I increased the amount of honey by a bit, and then cut the recipe in half to make just one loaf. The house smelled so good while this was baking. I actually think this is the least dense bread I’ve ever made. I tried a trick with the rising of the bread–heating the oven to 500 degrees for about 3 minutes and then turning off the oven and allowing the dough to rise in the heated oven. And I think I may be getting better at kneading too (I’m just NEVER sure I’m doing it right). Another thing I love about making my own bread is knowing all the ingredients. If you’re ever bored, look at the list of ingredients on a loaf of bread at the store. Usually it’s quite long and filled with stuff you have no idea what it is and why it is included in your loaf of bread. A basic loaf of bread is usually just flour, yeast, water, and some type of oil and possibly a sweetener. So here’s the recipe I used…
Honey Wheat Bread
Makes one loaf
1 cup warm water (110 degrees–I heat mine in the microwave for 45 seconds)
1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/4 cup honey
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons and 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.
Add honey, stirring well.
Mix in whole wheat flour, salt and vegetable oil. Mix well.
Work all-purpose flour in gradually–I added a 1/2 cup at a time and mixed.
Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes (until the dough begins to look/feel shiny and when you stick two fingers into the dough, it springs right back).
Shape dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Move the dough ball all around the bowl so that it is covered in oil and won’t stick to anything as it rises. Cover with a damp towel and let rise about 45 minutes, or until doubled in size. Don’t forget the oven trick if you don’t have a warm place to rise dough.
After the dough has risen to twice its size, punch the dough down. Literally–punch it down. This is my favorite part of making bread!
Take out the punched out dough and shape into a rectangle the size of your loaf pan (9×5). Place dough into the greased loaf pan. Cover with a damp towl and let rise until risen to the top of the pan–this takes about an hour….again use the oven trick. Works like a charm every time!
Once the final rise is complete, pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the crust is lightly browned. Scrumptious, right out of the oven , with butter. I’m drooling thinking about it!
I think this is the highest rising loaf to date!
I love the subtle nuttiness the whole wheat flour gives this bread. It’s the perfect ratios of whole wheat to white flour in my opinion, all with a hint of sweetness from the honey. DE-LISH!
I can’t believe the night is almost over. After dinner (which was broccoli, mashed potatoes, a slice of the homemade bread, and sliced plum tomatoes with Italian dressing) we went to B.J.’s to buy our bulk items for the month. A total of close to $150 with about $67 in food! Wow. That’s more than we were really planning on, but it was all stuff that we needed. Oh well. We’ll see how the remainder of the month goes.
I’m about ready for a snack. I’m going to break into the Sabra Roasted Red Pepper hummus that I found at B.J.’s! And maybe some homemade granola and yogurt too. My stomach is grumbling.
By the way, I’m down slightly over 5 pounds 🙂
We have beautiful weather on the horizon for the next week–sunny and in the 70s and 80s!