I’ve become hooked on making homemade bread in less than 5 minutes a day!!! Hook, Line and Sinker. As a mother, writer for two blogs, managing a thrift store, and managing a meal planning business, I need things that save me time throughout my day. When I used to buy bread from the grocery store, I was unhappy with breads…the ingredients on the label, how long it lasted before it was gone, how much money I was wasting buying it from the store. I decided it truly was time to make my own. Plus, it helps reduce our grocery bill each month. I used my bread machine, twice a week making loaves of bread and freezing the extra. I love my bread machine, but this method of making homemade bread seems much faster.
I’ve made all types of homemade breads, rolls, biscuits, pizza dough and more and since changing or grocery budget to a monthly menu, I found this great recipe for homemade bread from the book Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and their website http://www.artisanbreadinfive.com. Whenever I want to make a loaf, I pull out a pound of dough, let it rise and bake. The greatest thing about this recipe for making homemade bread, is that the dough lasts up to two weeks in the fridge. All the mixing and prep is divided over four one-pound loaves.
You do need to allow a few hours when you first start the dough for rise time, but you are rewarded with enoughdough to last two weeks, depending on how much bread your family eats and what recipes you have planned for the week.
Kitchen Tip: Whenever you bake bread or anything with yeast, make sure you only use a glass, wooden, or plastic mixing bowl and utensils. If you use stainless steel, you won’t get a good rise on your dough, so just avoid it. Second, use lukewarm water about 120 degrees, dissolve your yeast, and let it stand about 10 minutes, until it’s nice and foamy. (you can use cold water, but it will take the dough longer to rise. Just don’t use hot water or you may kill the yeast.)
Mix your dough, by adding about a cup of flour at a time. This is where I add in the vinegar. Cover your dough with a towel or place in a lidded food container but do not snap it shut. You want the gases from the yeast to escape. Allow the dough to rest at room temperature for 2 hours (usually a draft free warm place). After the initial 2 hours, the dough will pretty much rise and fill up your container. No need to punch down, it will settle on its own.The dough can be used right after the initial 2 hour rise, but it is much easier to handle when it is chilled. Pop it into the fridge either overnight or at least 3 hours.
When ready to bake, cut off a chunk of dough (usually 1-pound piece of dough) using kitchen shears or you can use your fingers. The dough is very wet, so lightly flour your hands, and pull it the shape of your loaf. Dust the top with flour and slash it with a sharp knife (flour keeps your blade from sticking) and let it rise for about 40 minutes.
(I forgot to flour my knife so it pulled the dough a little when making slices on the top.)
Place a metal broiling pan in the oven on the lowest rack and preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Put your loaf in the oven and then quickly pour a cup of HOT water into the broiler pan and shut your oven. Bake for 30 minutes. (Oven temperatures vary, first I tried baking for 45 minutes, which gave me a crunchy darker crust sour dough bread, then I tried baking for 30 to 35 minutes ( bread pictured below) gave me a crusty golden bread, and then I reduced the baking time to 25 minutes because during the summer months my oven heats up faster, it gives me a soft french roll light crust bread. (Just the way we like it.) This bread has that awesome crunchy crust with an incredible soft flaky inside. We seem to all inhale the bread so fast because it’s so delicious. The recipe states this makes four 1 lb. loaves, but for sandwich size loaves, it makes two decent loaves. You can double or triple it and store it in the fridge for 2 weeks making this recipe a great ready made recipe.
Here’s the recipe so you can make fresh homemade bread in just 5 minutes a day. Enjoy!
I now bake my bread on a cookie sheet since my pizza stone broke and I haven’t replaced it. But baking on a pizza stone is perfect because it conducts heat well. I sprinkle a little bit of cornmeal on the cookie sheet and let the dough rest before baking.
What’s your family’s favorite bread recipe? Does anyone have a great garlic bread recipe?