Friday, April 24, 2009

Baking (or attempting to!)

Okay! I love reading all these beautiful blogs about food, like my cousin Erica's cooking blog! So I thought I would attempt to do a lovely post about making bread! It didn't exactly go like I hoped but the end product was good, so that is really what matters.

So, first you mix up your ingredients according to the recipe. I was just waiting for the yeast to activate in the water so I thought I would take some pictures of the ingredients, all artsy and posed (like a cooking show). However, I only have two ingredients clearly showing...not so clever!

Meanwhile, the yeast was really going to town! Okay, need to focus a little more I guess.

Here is the messy (but fun!) part...kneading the dough! Notice my rings carefully set aside in the background! I thought that dough plastered to the side of my wedding diamond might not be so cool.

Then, you let it rise and carefully cover it with a beautiful towel that your mother embroidered for your hope chest (or any towel that you might happen to have...but I am sure it won't work as well). 

Okay...I thought I learned this lesson already!

After punching it down twice, form the dough into loaves and let it rise again. Notice how my loaves are all lopsided and one side is bigger than the other? I am happy to say that it doesn't affect the taste.

And THEN!!!...bake it in the oven and fill the house with THE MOST glorious smell ever! Yum! is the recipe:
(from Elaine Nissley's kitchen in Lancaster, PA)

4 cups  milk
4 tsp.  salt
4 T   butter
4 T   honey
1 T   yeast
1/4 cup   warm water
9-10 cups   flour 
(I use 3 cups whole wheat and the rest white)

Mix together and let rise twice before forming into loaves. Bake at 350-375 for 30 minutes. Enjoy!!


Erica said...

Loved this post, Melanie! You are so funny. I really like the way you write.
Your kitchen looks so nice and cozy. And the bread sounds delicious! I may have to give it a try...

ben & mindy caron said...

Oh, sweet Melanie, wait till Mom sees this post! She's gonna love it! I have memories of her making bread with us and giving us those cute little-kid bread pans for us to use....remember that?! And she always wore an apron. Well, must have been good practice because your bread looks perfectly delicious! Love you!

Heather said...

Yum! Your bread looks delicious.

My loaves never look the same, either. And I've had quite a few yeast-taking-over-the-world experiences, too. :)

Melanie said...

Okay, just a little addition (in case someone actually tries to make this recipe!)...the way I printed it there is exactly the way it says it on my recipe card. However, there are a few tricks that make thing go easier for me.

1. For the yeast, I take the 1/4 cup of water and dissolve a teaspoon of sugar in it and then add the yeast and leave it sitting.
2. I often slightly warm up 2 cups of the milk and soften (or melt) the butter for easier mixing. Not sure if this helps it rise better but I think so (no proof on that though...just a theory).

Okay, that's all for now...happy baking!

Erica said...

Hello again!

I made bread yesterday, using your recipe!

It turned out really well. It rose beautifully and the flavor was wonderful. We were having hamburgers, so we made eight buns and one loaf.