HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
What's your latest food quest? Share your adventure
TELL US

Bread for beginners

l
Laura Jones Jul 14, 2008 12:21 PM

Hey all,

I'm tired of shelling out $5/loaf for our coop's local wheat and grain bread, and want to start baking loaves at home. I'm experienced in the kitchen, but relatively new to yeast breads. Any suggestions for a nice, forgiving recipe to learn on? I'm looking for something that has a least 1/3 to half whole wheat, but prefer even heartier recipes w/ grains and oats.

Thanks for any thoughts!!

sljones

  1. m
    mpalmer6c Jul 14, 2008 07:39 PM

    Preferences vary tdremendously, of course, but I think the best flavor comes from bread made only with flour, salt, water and yeast, with a little bit of sugar to get the yeast going. Here's the basic sort of recipe I started out on:

    http://www.meninaprons.net/archives/2...

    When I read Carol Field's "The Italian Baker" (well worth buying, in my view, I made bread with even more flavor. Mix together quite a bit of the water to make a batter, plus some of the flour along with yeast, and allow to work overnight at room temperature (exact proportions don't seem to matter). The next day, add the rest of the ingredients and proceed normally.

    Obviously, this is easier with a stand mixer.

    You can use up to half whole wheat flour. For whole grain bread, well, that's another recipe.

    I've had best results with bread flour, commonly availaable in supermarkets, rather than all-purpose. And as you no doubt know, you'll want a serrated bread knife.

    1. michele cindy Jul 15, 2008 09:58 AM

      I felt the same way as you. Plus all the breads in my store usually have corn syryp in them. I knew I would not have the patience for making bread, often enough, so I bought a bread machine. I've made a whole wheat, and a bananna bread so far. I'm looking forward to the cooler weather to try out more recipes.

      1. b
        Boswell Jul 15, 2008 12:13 PM

        There's the now-famous "no knead" bread recipe, about which you'll find hundreds of posts on this board. I swore off bread baking years ago, thinking I could never produce a bakery-quality loaf, and I now make this recipe at least once a week. If you have bread flour, a covered cast-iron pot, and about 18 hours, you can make an amazing loaf of bread. Search the board for "no-knead bread."

        1 Reply
        1. re: Boswell
          chowser Jul 17, 2008 04:46 AM

          This is a great way to start. This blog has the recipe, as well as pictures and video that show how easy it is.

          http://www.alnyethelawyerguy.com/al_n...

        2. todao Jul 16, 2008 10:47 PM

          Gallahad’s Crusty Dinner Rolls

          1/8 ounce yeast
          5 ounces. lukewarm water
          1 tsp. sugar
          1/2 tsp. salt
          1 tsp. oil
          1 egg white
          2 c. bread flour
          ¼ cup steel ground oats

          Soak the steel cut oats overnight in cold water to cover. Drain and set aside.
          Preheat oven to 450 degrees
          Dissolve yeast in 2 ounces of the warm water. In mixing bowl combine yeast, remaining water, salt, sugar, steel cut oats and oil. Place the flour in a mixing bowl and create a well in the center. Pour the liquid mixture into the well and gradually pull the flour into the center, mixing as you combine ingredients. Add flour as necessary to create a soft, slightly sticky dough. Roll the dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Set aside and allow to rise until double. Punch down and allow to rise a second time.
          Add 1 tsp. water to the egg white and whip until frothy.
          Punch down and divide in 5 – 6 individual pieces and form each piece into rounded, slightly flattened balls. Place on greased cookie sheet and allow to rise until nearly double. Brush with egg white.
          Bake in preheated 450 degree oven for approximately 20 minutes or until interior temperature reaches 205 degrees. For hard outer crust, place a pan of boiling water in the bottom of the oven while the rolls are baking.

          1 Reply
          1. re: todao
            todao Jul 17, 2008 07:41 AM

            Ooops, I forgot the part about kneading:

            Gallahad’s Crusty Dinner Rolls
            1/8 ounce yeast
            5 ounces. lukewarm water
            1 tsp. sugar
            1/2 tsp. salt
            1 tsp. oil
            1 egg white
            2 c. bread flour
            ¼ cup steel ground oats
            Soak the steel cut oats overnight in cold water to cover. Drain and set aside.
            Preheat oven to 450 degrees
            Dissolve yeast in 2 ounces of the warm water. In mixing bowl combine yeast, remaining water, salt, sugar, steel cut oats and oil. Place the flour in a mixing bowl and create a well in the center. Pour the liquid mixture into the well and gradually pull the flour into the center, mixing as you combine ingredients.
            Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and, with floured hands, knead until smooth, about ten minutes. Add flour as necessary to create a soft, slightly sticky dough. Roll the dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Set aside and allow to rise until double. Punch down and allow to rise a second time.
            Add 1 tsp. water to the egg white and whip until frothy.
            Punch down and divide in 5 – 6 individual pieces and form each piece into rounded, slightly flattened balls. Place on greased cookie sheet and allow to rise until nearly double. Brush with egg white.
            Bake in preheated 450 degree oven for approximately 20 minutes or until interior temperature reaches 205 degrees. For hard outer crust, place a pan of boiling water in the bottom of the oven while the rolls are baking.

          2. s
            sogi Jul 17, 2008 03:17 PM

            I just started using the Simple Crusty Bread recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois. It's so easy and quick! The recipe appeared in the NYTimes recently:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/21/din...

            And as another post mentioned, the No-Knead bread is always a winner.

            Show Hidden Posts