I’ve always enjoyed the results of home made bread, and if you’ve followed this blog since the beginning (har har hardee har har) you will have read my Baking Bread post where I tell you all about how I learned to knead bread from a woman who was built like a mound of bread dough. I am starting to acquire a similar shape despite my best efforts to change my diet and increase my exercise, and wonder if it may have something to do with the body reflecting the things we love – like bread!
In any case, I’ve always been frustrated by not having the perfect place and temperature to raise the bread. Either too cold or too drafty, and in the oven, too hot. When I was growing up in Northern New Brunswick (where I learned to make and knead bread), we had a hot air furnace, and I used to stand the bread dough over the hot air register.
I had the experience of using a bread maker when house-sitting for a friend in England, and said if I ever stumbled on one in a second-hand shop I’d give up the sensory pleasure of kneading the bread, punching down the dough, kneading it again and shaping it, and turn over the work (and all that pleasure!) to a machine.
Well, when out looking for bits and bobs for my new apartment, I stumbled on a Sanyo Bread Factory Plus in a charity shop for a mere $15.00. As I stood there, humming and hawing as to whether or not I should drop a mere pittance on the enormous kitchen appliance, the shop clerk told me it was pink tagged, which meant it was half price, which meant it was $7.50, which was pretty hard to resist.
Of course there was no recipe book or manual with it, so I did a web search and found a basic bread-making-machine recipe, and made a loaf with stone ground flour. It was odd shaped and very dense (in my excited haste, didn’t sift the flour!!) and discovered what I thought was a Tablespoon on my set of charity shop measuring spoons was in actual fact half a Tablespoon (isn’t that the same as a teaspoon?) so no wonder the loaf turned out tasting like it did. Not enough sugar, salt, or fat!
I decided to try the old fashioned porridge bread my family loved when I was 14-years old and just learning to make bread, and went over to Mom’s and dug around in her recipe-book cupboard, and voila, there was the Purity Flour recipe book – looking much the worse for wear, but the recipe I wanted was there, so I adjusted the quantities to fit the bread machine (based on the basic recipe I’d found) and produced an amazing loaf of bread.
Oh it is so easy.
Here’s the recipe in order of the ingredients as they go into the machine:
- 1/3 cup rolled oats
- 1 and 1/3 cups boiling water
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4 teaspoons fat ( I used oil)
- 2 tablespoons milk (instead of milk powder, which I don’t keep and don’t intend to buy)
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- Stir with a rubber spatula to dissolve sugar and salt, and help soften the oats.
- 3 and half cups sifted stone ground whole wheat flour (very important to sift the flour to make a nice, light loaf)
- make a little well in the centre of the flour (DO NOT MIX INTO THE LIQUID) and add 2 teaspoons active dry yeast into the well (very important that the yeast doesn’t touch the liquid ingredients).
- Close the lid, and set on the whole wheat bake setting (3 and 1/2 hours).
Check out the results! Wow! So easy, and when baked bread sells for between $4.00 and $5.00 a loaf you can bet I’ll be using this machine!
- Easy Excellent Bread-Machine Bread (eatdrinkbetter.com)
- May Your House Be Filled With the Fragrance of Homecooked Bread (plotmamas.wordpress.com)
- Hawaiian Bread (suburbhomestead.wordpress.com)
- Garlic basil breadsticks (f00dventures.wordpress.com)
- Fruit and Nut Loaf (foxinanapron.wordpress.com)
- Breadmakers Recipes and Tips – Bread Recipe for Panettone – Italian Sweet Bread (notecook.com)
- The Secret To Making Real Italian Bread (jovinacooksitalian.com)