Home for the Holidays, by Thomas Kincaid

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easy Yeast Bread, Step by Step

Hello, Ladies!

It's wonderful to be back! I am feeling so much better today and also..the SUN IS SHINING! Oh, what a lovely day!! If I didn't have such a mess going in my home from all of my days of inactivity, I would go dance in the sun. Dance in the sun!!

Well, I'm sorry but I haven't put together my menu for the week. That's normally something I post on Mondays. Instead, I thought that I would share a wonderful, easy bread recipe and encourage you to try this by hand! That's how I do it and, believe me, if I can do this with success, ANYONE at all can do it!!

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EASY YEAST BREAD

3 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tbsp yeast (or two dry packets)
3 Tbsp of sugar
1 Tbsp salt
2 Tbsp veggie oil
1/2 cup powdered milk
6-8 cups flour

Okay, I'm going to talk you through this...First of all, I generally make this whole wheat bread or a combo of that and white flour, because I'm concerned about getting enough whole grains in our diets.

First, put the warm water into a large bowl...This is WARM water, not hot. I used hot before and I murdered the yeasties. You don't want to do that, or your bread won't rise. So, warm water in a bowl. Next, sprinkle in the sugar. Whisk it in. Next, goes the yeast. I let this sit until it starts to bubble. Usually, about 5 minutes. Then, I whisk in the salt, veggie oil, and powdered milk.

Alright, here comes the fun part...I usually put in four cups of whole wheat flour, whisking it one cup at a time until it becomes too much for that, then I use a spoon. Next, I add some .... perhaps, a cup of white flour. By that time, the dough is stiff enough to begin kneading.

Exercise time! Turn the sticky dough out onto a floured surface...Start kneading.

Okay, don't let kneading scare you! There are plenty of pretty pictures out there on the Internet to show you how to do this "properly". My kneading looks more like wrestling, but, hey, it works! My bread turns out just fine. Do the best you can...If you need help, check out this video. I do this for about 15 minutes (listen to music or watch TV to cut the boredom, unless you are highly entertained by punching dough around). Alternate kneading on a floured surface and putting it back in the bowl (cleaned out), when it gets sticky and kneading it with oil.

After the kneading, put it in an oiled bowl with a cloth over it and let it rise 45-60 minutes in a warm place. It should double in size.

Then, punch it down (get your kids to do this - it is fun!). Shape into 2 loaves, or roll out and use a biscuit cutter to cut into rolls, or roll out and shape into pizza dough...or braid or whatever. Let it rise again about 30 minutes. Put it in a pre-heated stove (350 degrees) and cook 30-45 minutes for loaves or 20 minutes for rolls.

Any questions?

Your house will smell wonderful and you can flex your muscles and say,"I am a strong, pioneer woman" and your family will think you are crazy! But no one will laugh when they taste this bread. It is DELICIOUS! Even if it turns out funny looking your first time, it will taste wonderful.

See, you did this all by yourself without a machine! Put a gold star on your forehead and have a GREAT DAY!!
Love,
Elizabeth

6 comments:

Alicia Robbins said...

Glad that you are feeling better again! I don't know about having as much fun doing this by myself. You made it sound fun though. When we get home I am planning to do all the providential things that you all are doing.
When we first got here we had been instructed that the mission home doesn't have a food storage, but only a well stocked pantry. I was used to buying in huge bulk amounts and had to learn to shop all over again. Now I cook big for transfers and then we are too busy the other 5 weeks til we start all over again.
Have a Lovely Day~
Alicia

Anwen said...

That is exactly how I feel when I make bread or tortillas, like a strong pioneer woman--so down-to-earth!

I am doing pretty well, just have a little cold. I'm back to school tomorrow. During Easter break I almost forgot I was a teacher! LOL!

I am glad your health is coming back; may you continue to have more strong, happy spring days.

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

Oh I just love homemade bread! Nothing can beat that smell. :)

Myrnie said...

Elizabeth, you are SO funny. Where's my gold star? :) (Or, maybe I don't get gold...I use a Kitchen Aid...so a red star for me? :) Thanks for sharing your recipe!

Alexandra said...

I love making bread by hand! It really feels great on the hands, not to mention it's a space saver with a small kitchen.

Glad you are feeling better!

Trish said...

Oh I love your sense of humour. I love it..yep....punching that dough makes me feel terrific! And....I love making bread. You are right...I do feel strong and pioneer and well...in touch with my roots. And I know I am giving good things to my family. Grin....I am soooo glad you are feeling better my friend.