Thursday, April 14, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
I've had home furnishings/ decorations on the brain lately so I was really excited when I read Brittanie Kivett West's blog this morning. She and her husband built an awesome twin bed with free plans from Ana-White.com I clicked on the link and quickly fell in love with her plans. She makes it seem so easy that I want to rush out to buy a saw and wood and get started on something right away!
Sunday, April 3, 2011
Here is my favorite bread recipe. This isn't a QUICK 1 HR BREAD. It does take some time for rising but it's so worth it!
This is still a one rise bread but letting it rise more slowly really improves the flavor of the bread.
Make sure you use white wheat and go ahead and buy vital wheat gluten & dough enhancer. They really are keys to light & fluffy bread & rolls.
My friend, Nancy, brought us this great bread when we moved in. It was so great that I went over to her house to find out her "secrets". The secret is that it's easy!
3 1/2 cups Hot tap water (!) (helps offset the cool can of milk)
Grind your wheat while getting everything else ready. Then, using a Bosch or other heavy duty mixer, combine ingredients Water through white bread flour. Add 6 c. wheat flour.
Mix well, then add rest of flour, vital wheat gluten, dough enhancer, salt and flax seed. Mix well til dough pulls away from side of the bowl. It will be sticky but should pull away from the bowl while mixing. This is pretty critical. It's tempting to add too much flour at this point. Wait and watch to see if the dough will pull away. If it's just too wet, then add more flour but let it mix for a minute or 3!
Set timer for 8-10 minutes and knead the dough according to your machine's setting. If you have to add more flour, you'll need to knead it longer to develop the new flour's gluten so make sure it's ready for this step before setting timer.
To tell if the gluten is developed enough (& you're done kneading),flour hands & pinch off a bouncy ball size ball of dough. Roll in hands to form ball then using your middle fingers of both hands, try to stretch the center of the dough out as far as you can before it breaks. You're trying to form a very thin dough "window". The dough is finished kneading when you can get it really thin and see light through it. Call me if this is too confusing!
Dump out dough onto an oiled counter and spread with your hands. Form into a long log and then divide it into 5 loaves. Either roll out wth a rolling pin and roll up cinnamon roll fashion OR simply form a loaf with your hands. Place in bottom of greased loaf pan. Let rise in a warm spot on your kitchen counter until doubled in size. Cover pans with damp cloth. This takes longer than rising dough in a warmed oven, but this slower rise takes away the harsh yeasty flavor quick-rise bread has. You can even rise overnight in the fridge and bake in the am.
Bake in preheated 350° for 25-30 minutes, then remove from pans and let cool completely before slicing (if you can wait that long!).
Given to Kristine Hipps by Nancy Whyte