Today I am posting a recipe for a delicious loaf of homemade bread. Making bread is very rewarding: from the kneeding to the rising to the punching to the baking - you will feel a HUGE sense of accomplishment when you lift that golden, steaming loaf from the oven. Annnnnd making bread is sooooooo EASY!!! It does take a little bit of time, but during that time you don't even have to be near the bread! Give 'er a try, and then give yourself a big pat on the back for mastering an essential life skill!
-1 1/4 cups warm water
-2 1/4 tsp yeast (aka one package)
-1 tsp salt
-1 tbsp sugar
-1 tbsp vegetable oil
-approx 3 cups all-purpose flour (you may need more, ya may need lessssss)
Makes one loaf, double everything for two!
Pour the warm water into a large bowl and stir in the salt and sugar until they are dissolved. Sprinkle over the yeast and wait about 5 min, the yeast will probably foam up a little. Stir down the yeast mixture and the veg oil.
Add the first two cups flour and mix wellllllll (I like to get my hands right in it). Add a little more flour, a small handful at a time, until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl.On a clean, floured surface, turn out that dough and KNEEEED IT for about five - ten min, or until the dough is smooth and stretchy and elastic. You may have to keep adding more flour...
Oil the bottom and sides of your bowl with a little more veg oil and plunk your dough ball in the middle. Cover it with plastci wrap and a tea towel and let it rise for an hour somewhere warm and cozy.
After an hour, punch the dough down (fun!) and kneed again for a minute or two. Then drop it into an oiled up bread pan. Let it rise again, uncovered, for another 30-45 minutes. Score the top of the loaf with a few knife slashes (this makes it look super authentic hee hee) and brush the top of the loaf with a little water (makes for a golden crust).
Bake yo bread for about 45 minutes or until it looks mighty golden in a pre-heated 375 degree oven.
Turn the loaf out of the pan and let coooooool...
If you want to make an herbed version, add a tsp of your fave herbs (basil, oregano, thyme, sage, whatevs) to the flour before you kneed and replace the veg oil with olive oil.
If you want cinnamon bread, increase the sugar to 2 tbsp and add 2 tsp cinnamon to the flour before kneeding. Ah hell - throw in 1/2 cup chopped raisins if ya want too!
The stew in the picture is a quick Tomato Kale Stew that I just whipped up by sauteeing 2 chopped garlic cloves, some chili flakes and two cups of chopped kale in some olive oil and adding a can of diced tomatoes with the liquid. Maybe a splash of red wine, too. Then just bring to a boil, simmer for a few min and season with S&P. Very simple, very hearty and yummy soup!
Until we meet again,