I recently decided that I’m really a baker and that bread is going to be my new “family business”. Let me begin this exposition about baking with the truth. It’s been since 7th grade home economics when we made pretzel bread that I tried to bake something that didn’t come from a box.
But the necessity for this adventure is real.
The Price Is Right
5 minutes. That’s how long it takes my family of four to go through a loaf of bread. But we aren’t talking about time. We are talking about price. God love him, but hubby prefers a more expensive brand. Growing up I didn’t really pay attention to the price of bread, but I’m pretty sure my mother wasn’t paying almost $7.00 just on two loaves of bread in a week! I know that amount doesn’t seem too big but over the course of a year that’s $364.00.
If I told you I can cut that cost to $7.00 for three loaves, you’d start to wonder if baking should be your new side hustle!
Pinterest to the Rescue?
When I first started to try recipes out people told me to search Pinterest for recipes. I’ve been really successful finding other recipes, but it all seemed to simple considering that one recipe was called the Basic Homemade Bread recipe.
In the past I’ve had good luck making recipes off the bags of ingredients that I buy in the store. Has anyone else found a better chocolate chip cookie recipe than the one that is on the Toll House Bag?
When I went to buy bread flour, I purchased Gold Medal Bread Flour, mostly because it had a recipe on it for bread.
I followed the recipe on the package because:
- it was really easy
- they make the flour
They should know how to use it, right?
In truth, bread is not hard to make. The difficult part of making bread is that it’s time consuming.
The first time you make bread, you should basically clear your schedule for an entire afternoon or plan to be in and out of the house according to the following schedule:
- Dissolve the Fleischmann’s Rapidrise Highly Active Yeast and sugar in warm water: 5 minutes
- Mix in Gold Medal Bread Flour: 1 minute
- Kneed the dough: 10 minutes
- Rise: 40 minutes
- Kneed the dough again: 2 minutes
- Rise: 40 minutes
- Bake 40 minutes
If you’re keeping track that’s almost 3 hours spread out. Of course, other than the actual bake time, you can come and go as you please, but really, staying close to home, especially for me to show my kids HOW bread was made was part of the experience. They even took dough and kneed it out and got to see it rise before we baked it up into little dinner roll sized loaves.
Tips & Tricks
If there are any complications in this process, I think I may still be rushing the yeast dissolving step. The next time I make it I’m going to be more careful. I think if I go the extra mile and actually measure the water temperature it might help. From what I can tell the water hasn’t been hot enough and I think that’s why my bread has been too dense.
That and the salt that I keep forgetting to add. I know…I know… I can hear my husband bitching at me about forgetting things, but you try making bread with two little ones at your heels. My 5 year old daughter Bootsie and my 3 year old son Boogie love to get involved and mommy has to dodge four hands, two plastic chairs and two usually crabby afternoon (almost nap time) attitudes while I’m following the recipe. My mother in law was here visiting and she said right out what was missing. With a little butter it tastes better, but having the salt missing definitely changes things.
What’s one recipe you’ve always wanted to try? Are you more of a chef or a baker? Put whatever it is on your cooking or baking “bucket list” and see what happens!