Tag: Baking and Confections

The quest for easy, fresh-baked bread…Mission accomplished? (Updated)


The other day, I tried this recipe from Natalie Oldfield’s Gran’s Kitchen cookbook (via 101 Cookbooks).

Why should you even click on the above link to the recipe?

  • No kneading
  • yeasty bread
  • Start to finish (including the time it takes for the bread to rise) in under 2 hours
  • Oatmeal, whole wheat, versatile wholesome-y, tweak-able goodness.

Do it.

I spritzed the loaf with olive oil and sprinkled whole wheat flakes on top before popping it into the oven. Nutty goodness ensued.

Mine was a little bit on the crumbly side after a few hours and a few slices, but I threw the remaining slices into the oven under the broiler (ever-so-quickly), and they made for great toast (with great peanut butter) the next morning.

Mostly, I like this recipe because I can time things so My Man comes home at about the same time I’m taking fresh bread out of the oven. Clever girl. (Yeah, that’s right…my house smells like fresh-baked bread. Hah!)

So, why does the title of this post end with a question mark?

I’ve got a bold tweak in the oven at the moment. I had some bread-machine mix (no bread machine, mind you) for 7 grain bread in the cupboard, so I used it in place of the flours/oats in the original recipe. But then I added salt. And yeast, like the recipe calls for. I suspect that was a bad move, since the mix had these things already. However, the mix had been opened, so I thought some of the yeast might be bust by now. To compensate (really, just because it’s what I do), I threw in a handful of whole wheat flakes and a handful of wheat germ.

I tasted the batter after scooping it into the loaf pan, and it was salty. I might be able to boot and rally, but I’m not sure.

So, we’ll see if I screwed the pooch on this one. It won’t be a reflection on the recipe if I did, so I still encourage you to try it.

The original bread has a whiff of sweetness to it (because of the oatmeal and the whisper of honey), but I think you could easily throw in dried herbs, or conversely add some cinnamon or nutmeg to sex it up according to your needs.

I’m off to check on the bread…and then to contemplate why bending, squatting, putting on and taking off shoes, etc. got so difficult all of a sudden. A couple of weeks ago, my little dude still gave me room. Now he’s hogging up my uterus. Naughty muppet. I’m grounding him until birth.

Post Script

Holy crap, I can’t believe I got away with that bread.

I expected a hard (or alien-like poofiness of a blob) brick of salty nastiness.

As it turned out, I have a slightly salty, very whole grain, high fiber, hearty  yet moist and soft (on the inside) bread.

Awesome.

My standards are pretty flex when it comes to eating my own food… but here’s the thing: my Portuguese man likes the bread.

Success, friends, by the skin of my teeth.

And now I’m more confident about baking.

Boa.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies Recipe – CHOW


Chocolate Crinkle Cookies Recipe – CHOW.

So, they’re called Chocolate Crinkle Cookies. Now I know. I have everything I need for these little guys, except for the eggs and the powdered sugar. Soon, very soon, I will make them.

(from Chow.com …how great are these guys?)

Difficulty: Easy

TIME/SERVINGS

Total: 1 hr 15 mins, plus 2 hrs chilling time

Makes: About 5 dozen cookies

Chocolate Crinkle CookiesSee More in the Gallery

Adapted from “The Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate” by John Scharffenberger and Robert Steinberg

Not too sweet, with a rich cocoa flavor, these cookies deserve their place on the holiday cookie plate or in the cookie jar. They’re also well suited for ice cream sandwiches.

Holiday Cookies – Candy Cane Cookies – Photo Gallery – CHOW


Holiday Cookies – Candy Cane Cookies – Photo Gallery – CHOW. Candy Cane Cookies

These must be made. It’s just a fact. A Christmassy fact. First, I’ve got to round up some children to  feed… but then, it’s on.

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From Chow.com:

Difficulty: Easy

TIME/SERVINGS

Total: 45 mins, plus 30 mins chilling time

Makes: About 4 dozen cookies

Candy Cane CookiesSee More in the Gallery

Adapted from “Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book

When I was young, these sugar cookies were a Christmas staple. But sometimes things you loved when you were a kid don’t live up to your adult standards. Well, this Betty Crocker classic has busted through the child-adult taste barrier. Make the kids roll these out, and then eat them yourself.

This recipe was featured as part of our Holiday Cookies photo gallery.

…read on : http://www.chow.com/galleries/66/holiday-cookies/2203/candy-cane-cookies