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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Homemade Crusty Bead

Do you have a food weakness? I do. I love fresh bread. It's a REAL weakness for me. Especially if it's hot from the oven fresh! You know the yumminess I'm talking about, right?  It can be found at your favorite bakery. Or... You go to your favorite little restaurant and they bring a small cutting board with a serrated knife and steamy hot loaf of bread to munch on while you wait for your dinner to be served.

{Read more after the jump....}

I have friends that make fresh bread for their families. But... I'm just not good at kneading. So, in an effort to maybe take the easy way around it, I purchased a bread machine. Bread machines make good fresh bread. The operative word being fresh.  For me, second-day bread from a bread machine... it kinda reminds me of cardboard. {bleh}
Then, a couple days ago I found a recipe that promised success in making bakery/restaurant style, fresh bread with a crusty exterior and soft interior in just five minutes. {Yeah... right!} I was beyond intrigued. I was completely sucked in. Mostly because the ingredients and instructions were so simple. I mean You're-Yanking-My-Chain simple.

Sure enough, I made the recipe. It literally took me longer to get the ingredients out of my pantry than it did to make the dough.The recipe renders four one-pound loaves. Today was day three of making one of the individual loaves. (That bowl up there..? It was nearly overflowing when I pulled the first quarter of dough out to make a loaf two days ago.) Each of these last three days, I have been presented with a wonderful, crusty loaf of hot, fresh bread that my sweet hubby and I quickly gobble up (gobble down?) for breakfast. 

Here's a picture of the bread I baked this morning. The golden color is inherent in the baking process. No extra egg wash or milk or anything was added. The dark color on the top of the bread is from the raw sugar I sprinkled on top of the loaf before baking.  It's a good thing I took the pictures before I told my hubby the bread was out of the oven. No sooner had I mentioned it, he was in the kitchen serving up his breakfast.

Mmmm...  I even eat up the heels from the loaf. They are that tasty!

The BEST part (besides the eating) ??  No kneading.  Really. Yeah - Really! You mix the four ingredients in a bowl (water, flour, yeast, salt). Let it sit for 2 hours then refrigerate it over night.  Then, you scoop out the amount you want to make a loaf. Shape it. Place it on a sheet of parchment and let it rest for an hour. They recommended baking it on a stone but I don't have one. So I just leave the loaf on the parchment on a flat baking sheet to bake. It works fine.

I hope you get a chance to try this simple recipe. But don't be fooled. While the effort put forth to make the dough only takes a few minutes, and the effort put forth to shape the loaf each morning only takes minutes, with all of the waiting, resting and refrigerating time it does actually take more than five minutes to make a loaf of bread. That being said, it is so TOTALLY worth it! Tomorrow after I use up the last of the dough I have I will make a new batch. This could turn into a habit!

Make it a wonderful day!

PS:  The link I provided above references the magazine where I found the recipe originally.  THIS LINK is one I just found by the same chefs/authors and walks you through the steps on how to make the bread.


  1. You're gonna kill my diet,Lady!
    Nothing like homemade bread straight from the oven and slathered with butter...is there an icon for drooling?

    PJ(Jessie Adams)

  2. Wow, I love making bread -- I even love kneading it; however, for a quick bread for dinner this sounds great!

  3. Jen, I've left something "very special" for you on my blog!!! Please drop by at your convenience!



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