As my children grow and become busy, and with the demands of keeping up a home–(cooking & laundry for nine people), helping with homework, Young Men and Young Women, Cub Scouts, merit badges, Jazz Band gigs, orchestra and play auditions, and most importantly, trying to keep our spirits fed by studying the gospel and serving in church callings, I am finding it increasingly more difficult to keep up a blog! As it should be, my priorities are with my church and my family, and not my blogging! You may not get too many posts this next little while… There are a lot of things happening this Spring and Summer–I’m super excited to face each new challenge and experience coming my way, but I will be quite busy for sure…. We’ll see how things go!
Having said all of that, Wednesdays at my home, are kitchen days! It is a day that that I am trying to focus on my kitchen…. cleaning the fridge and oven, organizing the pantry, baking, etc! I had to make some bread yesterday because we were all out, AND, while cleaning out the fridge, I uncovered a can of pumpkin that needed to be used up before it went bad on me. SOOO, with that in mind, you are going to get TWO posts today (Homemade Bread & Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake)….because I simply can not guarantee with the next one will be…. I wish you could have smelled the aroma from my home yesterday while these breads were baking….it was HEAVENLY! But alas, it was not to last long!
Anyways, a few years back, my dear friend Emily gave me this bread recipe, and I have seriously never used another recipe since then! I simply LOVE this one. It is so easy and it really doesn’t take up all that much time. I’m just going to give you the recipe and a few quick pointers, because I have so much work that needs to be done today. I hope you will enjoy it! Let me know if you try it and it if works out for you! This recipe makes two loaves….When I double it, I can get out 5 loaves!
2 C Water
1/4 C Butter
Put these in a microwave for a couple of minutes so that the butter is melted and the water is hot–let it set for a while to cool slightly while you prepare the yeast and flour mixture.
1 C warm water
1 T yeast
1 T Sugar
Make sure your water is very warm, but not scalding hot–sprinkle the yeast over the water and sugar over the yeast. Give it a good mix and let it sit for a few minutes.
In a large bowl, mix 6 C flour, 1 tsp salt, 1/3 c sugar or honey, 1/4 C powdered milk, 1/3 C gluten–(found on your baking isle in the stores–don’t skip this ingredient–it does wonders for your bread).
Add the hot water mixture and the yeast (make sure your hot water has cooled enough that it will not burn the yeast when you add the yeast to it). You may need to add a little more flour if necessary. If you are mixing it in a mixer, add enough flour that when it is mixing, there is no flour on the side of the bowl…Then, cover it up and let it rise for about a half and hour or so. Keep your house as warm as you can when you are baking with yeast. It helps, trust me!
When it is done, spread a small amount of shortening on your counter top — do not use flour– you should have all the flour you need in your bowl… you don’t want to add more flour. Fold and kneed it and shape it into your loaves. Grease your loaf pans really good and put your bread into each one. Cover the pans and let the dough rise for about another half an hour. Preheat your oven up to 350 and let it bake for 30 minutes.
When it is all done, spread a layer of butter over the top of the bread. Let it sit in the loaf pan for 10 minutes and then invert it to get the bread out of the pan. It should slip out pretty slick! Bread always slices better when it has had a chance to cool off… however, we seem to not be able to wait that long at our house for warm, fresh bread. We enjoy every single tasty bite! Let me know if you try it!