Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Baking Bread

Baking bread is an art I’d like to have in my repertoire. I want to avoid the additives in shop-bought bread. The age and quality of bought bread is largely unknown and the shops that bake bread daily are often expensive and do not show ingredients. Making bread at home means I know what goes in it and I get a great feeling from making something myself. It makes the house smell warm and homey as well.  

Four Ingredients.

I needed a good and easy from scratch recipe. The first recipe I made and tried was an artisan 5 minute a day bread. I did not understand the idea behind this bread until after I’d finish baking my first loaves. For more information (5 minute bread). I didn’t even realise it was a no knead bread, as I was looking forward to that part.

Here is the recipe

3 cups of Water
1.5 tblsp Yeast
1.5 tblsp Salt
6.5 cups of Flour

Add water, yeast and salt to a bowl. Stir, then add flour and stir.

Activating the yeast, which I didn't have to do

Which sounds simple enough, but not for me. I was paranoid the water was too warm and the yeast wasn't activated. So I added some sugar to a bit of yeast just to make sure. Don't do this.

Stirring in the flour.

The rising process was so fascinating to me that I checked the bread every few minutes, which defeated the purpose of 5 minute a day bread.

Control photo to see if it rose.
It rose...
There is a bowl under there.

And rose right on to the bench!

I shaped some of it into small balls and left to rest on the baking tray. The mixture was wet and sticky and made shaping difficult.
But I made some bread rolls.

They looked good and smelt good. The crumb was fine and the texture great.  The family didn’t mind the taste, but I thought it was a bit sour but edible and impressive for my first attempt. I left the dough in the fridge and make some more rolls the next day. It was much easier to work with but still no kneading. I felt the taste got worse and sourer and I didn’t even bother making it on a third day with some dough left over.
So next time I will try a different recipe with less yeast, and maybe active the yeast with a little honey (if that’s possible). I’ll add some oil or butter. I still like the idea of using plain organic unbleached flour with no bread improvers.
 We’ll see how it goes next time. Once I finished removing dough-glue from my kitchen


  1. Ah, the joys of baking bread! :) Baking bread is so tactile and experiential... you'll get it after a few tries. Then it will just 'feel' right. Stick with it though because it is so much fun and so much healthier than the storebought stuff!

    This Good Life

  2. I'll keep trying. The smell of bread cooking in the house is delightful.