Who doesn’t love the smell of fresh bread baking in the oven? The scent of warm dough filling the kitchen. We always fought over who got the “butt” of the bread. You know, those two end peices? Cut your slice while it’s warm and watch the butter melt. Mmmmmmm.
It definitely beats store bought bread. You don’t have to worry about how long it’s been sitting on the shelf, the eco-footprint used to transport it to the store, or all of those strange ingredients. Just in case you were curious, the following is a list of some of the questionable ingredients in the “Great Value” brand bread from Walmart:
High Fructose Corn Syrup, Soybean Oil,wheat gluten, dough conditioners(sodium stearoyl lactylate, calcium stearolyl lactylate, Mono- And Diglycerides, calcium peroxide, calcium iodate, datem, ethoxylated omno and diglycerides, Azodicarbonamide, Enzymes), soy flour, yeast food (Ammonium Sulfate), Monocalcium Phosphate, soy lecithin, Calcium Propionate (A Preservative).
Yikes. That’s all I have to say about that.
What if I told you that baking a delicious loaf of homemade bread was easier than doing the laundry or emptying the dishwasher (worst.chore.ever.)? The only equipment you need is a bread maker with a dough setting, bread pan and oven, and voila! I always prefer baking in the oven as opposed to breadmaker. I find the bread cooks more evenly and has a much nicer texture.
It’s easy enough that I have even made it one-handed with a baby on my hip and quick enough that if you run out of bread to make sandwiches for the kids lunches, you can throw this together and have it ready in a couple hours. I find it fairly versatile too. I use it to make hot dog buns, dinner rolls, and sub buns as well. The only trick, if there is one, is to make sure your yeast is good. Please don’t use old or expired yeast!
Have fun with this recipe. Throw in some garlic, basil and oregano to make Italian herb bread. Add some cinnamon, raisins and splash of vanilla to make a cinnamon-raisin loaf. Enhance the nutritional value by adding sunflower seeds and hemp seeds. It’s up to you!
- 1 1/8 cups water (room temperature)
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups multi-grain/whole wheat flour*
- 1 cups all-purpose white flour*
- Salt (sprinkle – about 1/4 tsp)
- 1.5 tbsp sunflower seeds (optional but good)
- 1.5 tbsp hemp seeds (optional but good)
- 1 1/2 tsp yeast (regular yeast works fine)
*Note: Any combination of flour will work. I prefer 2 cups multigrain and 1 cup white. If using 100% multigrain or whole wheat, you may find your rising time is longer, and your bread will be a bit more dense.
- Know your breadmaker settings. With mine, you add ingredients from wettest to dryest with the yeast last.
- Add the water, oil and honey to the breadmaker.
- Cover with your 3 cups flour.
- Sprinkle salt, and add any extra add-ins (hemp seeds, herbs, etc.)
- Add yeast.
- Set breadmaker to “dough” setting and let it run through its cycle (mine takes 1 hr 30 min).
- Remove dough from breadmaker and place in a greased bread pan. Cut 3 slits in bread as shown*, and cover with a cloth to rise.
- Turn oven to 350°F and bake for 20-25 min. Depending on your particular oven you may need a few minutes more or less. The top of the loaf should be nicely browned.
There you have it. A hot delicious loaf of bread, with little cleanup. This loaf freezes well too, so if you wish, wrap it up and put it in the freezer. Your house now smells heavenly too. Cut yourself a slice, make a cup of Earl Grey, and enjoy!
What are some of your favourite bread add-ins? Do you prefer the convection bake or regular bake setting? Curious for your input! Comment below and let me know!