When I was little, we made all our own bread. So technically I have done it before. Just not as an adult. I have, in more recent years, made plenty of baking powder breads and pastries, but the only yeast dough I have made is pizza dough, and it is just not the same.
I’ve been thinking about baking bread for about six years. And I did it today. One of the things holding me back was sheer laziness. I have a KitchenAid, which would do most of the kneading for me, but the time factor was just intimidating me.
So I recently bought, with a birthday gift certificate, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois. Last week I read it. This weekend I picked up extra flour. Yesterday I mixed together a half batch of dough. Today I baked a small loaf of the best bread I have ever eaten.
This is the dough right after I mixed it.
And here it is the next day, after rising (which meant spreading to fill out the pan and then puffing up) and collapsing.
This was a half batch, so should have made about two loaves. I think I pinched off only about a third of it, though, which made this adorable loaf.
Twenty-five minutes in the oven resulted in this beauty. It is too brown on one side, because my oven heats unevenly and I forgot to compensate, but I love the way it puffed up.
I loved the way it tasted, too.
But next time I am making my own butter. (Not literally next time, which will be today. Today’s will go with anti-pasto. But this weekend, maybe.)