Author Topic: Bread that DOESN'T suck  (Read 14593 times)

Le Poisson

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Bread that DOESN'T suck
« on: March 27, 2015, 05:42:59 PM »
Whenever I make bread, it sucks. Does anyone have a recipe that costs a pittance and actually rises, tastes good, and meets all the other qualifications to be called 'bread'? If my bread continues to suck, should I just pay $15 for a used breadmaker?

southern granny

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2015, 07:40:20 PM »
It is all about the temperature.  Make sure you have a thermometer and that it is accurate.  Warm the water or milk to 110-115 degrees before you add the yeast and make sure if you add melted butter that is is also warm.   Heat a jar of water in the microwave for 4 minutes or until it boils and then leave the water in the microwave and place your dough covered with saran wrap and a towel in the microwave to rise.  That should take care of your problem.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2015, 07:55:40 PM »
Thanks frugal confederate. The lowest priced bread in town this week was $2.00 per loaf. We oughta be able to beat that, but my bread is so awful, I won't even force myself to eat it.

Megma

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2015, 08:06:51 PM »
Try the no knead Dutch oven method, works wonders for us and recipes available online. There was a thread about bread on ask a mustaschian a few weeks ago, which many including me suggested this type of bread.

deborah

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2015, 08:26:12 PM »
Try a quickbread like damper that doesn't use yeast, and see how that goes. This is my favourite http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/27360/spinach+feta+damper but it uses Australian measurements that are different to US.

MountainBeard

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2015, 08:38:18 PM »
What type of bread recipe are you looking for?

retiredmom

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2015, 04:36:23 PM »
What do you hate about your bread? I make lots of great breads, but I'd have to hear a little more about what's going wrong with yours.

MsPeacock

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2015, 05:11:28 PM »
+1 to what retiredmom asked. The fix really depends on what is wrong with your bread - and there may be more than one thing causing the various problems. If you can describe what you do and what the results are you may get more helpful responses.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2015, 06:50:39 AM »
So whats going wrong - either under-rising or  a doughy taste.

I'm just looking for a simple slicing bread for sandwiches and day-to-day cooking that is cheap to make and doesn't require special ingredients.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2015, 09:01:26 AM »
So whats going wrong - either under-rising or  a doughy taste.

I'm just looking for a simple slicing bread for sandwiches and day-to-day cooking that is cheap to make and doesn't require special ingredients.

For an excellent sandwich bread that's dead-easy, near foolproof, I use a tweaked version of this recipe which has nice pictures to see the method:

http://food52.com/recipes/23747-no-knead-sandwich-bread

I'd make it as white bread a few times, as it's a bit easier. The timing is not critical. Except in the hottest summer months without A/C on, you can let it rise much longer than 5 hours (say, overnight) before punching it down and shaping into loaves.

But if you want a much more nutritious version, I've adapted it for nearly all whole wheat flour:

650g whole wheat (needs to be regular whole wheat, not ww pastry)
217g white bread flour
^^ Exact proportion isn't necessary, you just want a total of 867g flour, with anywhere from 1/2 to 3/4 being whole wheat.

2 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast
1/2 cup flax meal (optional, but does add nice flavor and texture)
720g water (without flax) or 740g water with flax

I've got a family of 5, and we eat a lot of bread, so I make 3-4 batches of this a week. Sometimes it decides to take a long time (2 hours) to rise in the loaf pans but it's always yummy, even when the loaves are a bit short/small. I've never had it turn out bad.

Rural

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2015, 10:34:30 AM »
If you really are having disasters, try beer bread for awhile: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/beer-bread-i/


Doesn't matter how crappy the beer, either., so you can use the cheap stuff. (Add another cup of flour if you go so cheap you get 16 oz. cans). Dark beer will change the taste, so you have some control there. No worries for kids; the alcohol cooks off.

remaofaes

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2015, 03:31:29 PM »
probably not what you're looking for but the other day I made Injera Bread for the 1st time and it was super easy and I liked the taste.  You have to let the teff flour & water mixture sit for a few days to ferment though.

Zikoris

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2015, 11:15:40 PM »

1967mama

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2015, 11:28:41 PM »
I've been making this artisan bread lately, and its terrifically easy and tastes AMAZING!

Here's the recipe:

http://www.artisanbreadinfive.com/2014/09/18/whole-grain-loaves-without-vital-wheat-gluten-and-highlights-from-the-mill-city-bread-festival#more-7217

This video shows the steps:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_c53AYZMGM

*It doesn't require kneading and I don't use a pizza peel, but rather just let it rise on a piece of parchment, then transfer both the paper and the dough into a preheated cast iron pan. Works great!

MishMash

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2015, 11:37:34 AM »
Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a day...best book I've EVER bought, tons of recipes, all no knead and every one I've tried has been AMAZING!

retiredmom

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2015, 11:47:12 AM »
The most important thing I ever did to improve my bread-making skills was to take "FLOUR WATER SALT YEAST" out from the library and read it cover to cover. http://smile.amazon.com/Flour-Water-Salt-Yeast-Fundamentals-ebook/dp/B007SGLZH6/ref=smi_www_rco2_go_smi_2053980522?ie=UTF8&%252AVersion%252A=1&%252Aentries%252A=0

The most important thing I learned from reading that book is that time, temperature and yeast are ingredients that can all be substituted for each other. You can make bread fast in a warm environment with a moderate amount of yeast, or make bread slow in a cold environment with a teeny-tiny amount of yeast, or make bread fast in a cold environment with a large amount of yeast, or any number of combinations.

Here's how I make a relatively fast, basic white bread:

1. Get a 2 cup glass measuring cup. Fill with 1.5 cups water and put in microwave for a minute. Stick a meat thermometer in it to check the temp, then microwave in 30 second intervals until it is between 95 and 115 degrees. Anything in this range is just fine, but if you are above 115, you can kill your yeast, so if you accidentally heat too much, just stir with a fork until the temp drops to 115 or below.

2. Add a tablespoon of whatever dry yeast you already have in the fridge, a tablespoon of sugar or honey or whatever other type of caloric sweetener you have in your kitchen, and stir well. Let the yeast develop for a few minutes while you do the next step. It should become at least a little creamy or foamy. If it doesn't, your yeast might be dead.

3. Put 3 cups of any white flour (I use ALDI brand because it costs between $1.29 and 1.69 for a 5-pound bag, and you can substitute up to a cup of whole wheat to make it healthier, without any other modifications, but I would learn to make white before you learn to make wheat) in a big-ass bowl and add 1 tablespoon of salt. DON'T FORGET THE SALT!

4. Stir a tablespoon or so of olive oil or (less ideally) any other oil or fat into the 2-cup measure. Then hold the 2 cup measure over the big-ass bowl and stir in a tablespoon of flour. Depending on the temperature of the water and the temperature of the room and the freshness of the yeast, it may foam over into the big-ass bowl. In any case, it should at least become creamier and foamier as you add the flour. Pour the water/yeast/sugar/oil mixture into the flour/salt mixture and stir until you can't stir any more.

5. Clean a nice-sized area of your table or counter with a damp sponge and then dry thoroughly so that the dough doesn't stick and make a huge mess. Sprinkle about 1/4 cup of flour on the table/counter and then dump out your dough and anything you can scrape off the sides of the bowl. Knead until all the flour is incorporated into a smooth ball. This could take around 10 minutes. If it is still very sticky, add flour a couple of tablespoons at a time and knead until incorporated. This is not the type of dough that will ever become fully unsticky - at that point it will be drier than is ideal. You should be able to knead it without it sticking to your skin when it is in a big ball, but when you pinch off a little bit and play with it, that will stick to your fingers somewhat. For best results, let sit a few minutes and then knead a few minutes more, but don't add more flour.

6. Pour another tablespoon or two of oil into the bowl, form dough into a nice ball, roll ball in oil to coat, then cover with a hot, damp dishcloth and leave in a warm place until doubled in size. You can check on it in half an hour, but it will probably take 45 minutes to an hour. (Alternately, cover with saran wrap and put in the fridge and it will rise overnight and have a more-developed flavor, but I don't often have time for this.)

7. Once dough has risen, remove back onto floured table/counter, punch it down, and shape the way you want it. I suggest one large loaf if you are patient and don't like a lot of crust, two smaller loaves if you are less patient but still want sliceable bread, or 3-8 baguettes or rolls if you want bread fast and/or LOVE crispy crust. Re-oil and re-cover with hot, damp dishcloth or saran wrap. Keep the cloth or the plastic right next to the dough so that it doesn't dry out. You might need more dishcloths/plastic than you used in the first rise if you are making multiple loaves.

8. Put a pizza stone or a Dutch oven or a loaf pan or even a cookie sheet into the oven and preheat to about 400. Do this as soon as you finish shaping the loaves.

9. When loaves are almost doubled in size (15-30 minutes depending on loaf size), slide them on to a pizza peel (or a cold, edgeless cookie sheet or a cutting board) that has been sprinkled with corn meal or even just flour, and slide onto pizza stone (or into dutch oven or onto cookie sheet). If you have a broiler drawer below your oven, open it up and pour in a couple of cups of cold water to make steam.

10. Cook until crust is browned, then pull out and stick meat thermometer in and see if interior is at 200 degrees. If not, put it back in. This can take anywhere from 10 minutes for breadsticks to over an hour for one big loaf.

11. If you don't have a meat thermometer, order one on Amazon now. I don't believe in bread machines or flour scales at all, and I don't think everyone needs to run out and buy some of the stuff I use right away (pizza peel, pizza stone, various ingredients I use for more complicated breads), but I'm pretty sold on the importance of a cheap thermometer that is long enough to reach the center of the loaf. I got mine at ALDI for $7 and there are several on Amazon right now for $6-10. But for anyone who doesn't have a meat thermometer and wants to make bread today, you can just cook it until it seems almost burnt on the outside, then pull it out and cut it in half. If the cut is doughy *at all* throw the pieces back in for another 10-20 minutes until you get a completely clean cut.

retiredmom

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2015, 12:01:16 PM »
I've done the no-knead breads and they are nice in some ways, but they aren't for everyone. By all means, try them, but don't give up on bread-making if they aren't your thing. I'd rather spend 2-3 hours making bread and then have it just be done. Bread projects that only take five minutes here and five minutes there but need a whole day of pre-planning don't meet my needs. Busier people with more structured schedules probably feel differently about this. :) If crock-pot cooking works for your schedule, then no-knead breads probably will, too.

MishMash

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2015, 12:09:34 PM »
I've done the no-knead breads and they are nice in some ways, but they aren't for everyone. By all means, try them, but don't give up on bread-making if they aren't your thing. I'd rather spend 2-3 hours making bread and then have it just be done. Bread projects that only take five minutes here and five minutes there but need a whole day of pre-planning don't meet my needs. Busier people with more structured schedules probably feel differently about this. :) If crock-pot cooking works for your schedule, then no-knead breads probably will, too.

I've never once spent a whole day pre planning making a dough mixture or making bread, I literally spend about 10 minutes to combine the ingredients and put it away....then I just need 30 minutes to let it rise while the oven heats up to rise. 

retiredmom

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #18 on: March 30, 2015, 12:28:04 PM »
I guess it is a difference between the original "Five Minutes a Day" method and the method in the second book, "Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day" which is the book I have. For the "healthy" version, you need to mix the dough, let rise for a minimum of 2 hours, then shape, then let rise for another 40-90 minutes, depending on whether it has ever been refrigerated, then bake. So you could power through and do it in about 4 hours total, with baking, but at that point you haven't saved any time over a quick 2-3 hour traditional recipe with kneading and baking.

My impression, which may be incorrect, is that most people who use the 5 minute/no-knead methods work full time and know when they leave the house how long it will be until they return. So they mix it fast in the morning, stick it in the fridge, work 8 hours (maybe commute/pick up kids), come home, shape it and preheat the oven, then bake it. Basically the same time schedule as crock-pot cooking (do a few quick things in the morning, go away for a set period of time, return, and it is either ready, or you just need to do a few more quick things). They are great systems for people who are on that schedule, not so great for people who don't know in the morning when/whether they will come home that day/night. Or people who don't know what they are going to eat for dinner and whether they are going to want bread until a couple of hours before dinner time, at most.

1967mama

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #19 on: March 30, 2015, 12:57:07 PM »
The neat thing about the 5 minutes a day bread is that you can leave the batch in the fridge for up to 2 weeks! When you want a loaf, you pinch off a grapefruit size piece, shape it and let it rise 40 minutes on the counter, then bake.  Sooooo easy.  See video up thread.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2015, 04:40:39 PM »
I remember reading about the 5 min a day bread a while ago. I forgot all about it. We'll give it a go and see how it pans out.

JRA64

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #21 on: April 03, 2015, 09:43:43 PM »
I've had good luck with the basic bread recipes in The Joy of Cooking.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #22 on: April 04, 2015, 11:04:41 AM »
After 2 loafs, I declare the 5 minute bread to be not what I'm after. Its good bread, but the loafs are very small and I can't see making kids lunches with this stuff.

Also, I eat the entire load as fast as it comes out of the oven which just doesn't work out to be very economical. Although it is cheaper than some of my other evening snacks. I'll try th erecipe from Joy of cooking. I seem to recall doing it before but overheating the yeast by proofing it on the woodstove and killing it.

1967mama

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #23 on: April 04, 2015, 12:57:01 PM »
@Prospector, Just so you know, the bread can also be made into larger loaves. I made a huge round the other day, something like you'd buy at a specialty bakery for around $8 a loaf.  You just have to adjust the cooking time to get the middle cooked through.  Make sure its hard and browned on the bottom too.

As for eating bread as fast as it comes out of the oven -- that made me LOL -- I found that when we started making good bread, we were eating it FAST, but after a while you settle into a pattern and just get used to eating fabulous bread every day :-)

Good luck in your continued search for bread that doesn't suck! (haha)

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #24 on: April 04, 2015, 06:38:18 PM »
As for eating bread as fast as it comes out of the oven -- that made me LOL -- I found that when we started making good bread, we were eating it FAST, but after a while you settle into a pattern and just get used to eating fabulous bread every day :-)

+1. We have three finished loaves in the pantry. I'm baking two more tonight, but that's to contribute to the family Easter dinner.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #25 on: April 04, 2015, 08:25:39 PM »
As for eating bread as fast as it comes out of the oven -- that made me LOL -- I found that when we started making good bread, we were eating it FAST, but after a while you settle into a pattern and just get used to eating fabulous bread every day :-)

+1. We have three finished loaves in the pantry. I'm baking two more tonight, but that's to contribute to the family Easter dinner.

Thanks to you and 1967mama - but really, a response from the gobbling chief. That's like salt in my wounds!

TRBeck

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2015, 08:49:37 AM »
I used the King Arthur classic white sandwich bread when I started making bread regularly. I have since tweaked it, skipping the milk powder and using a 50/50 split of milk and water for the liquid and using a mixture of whole wheat and unbleached bread flours, but used as written, it is a simple, very good loaf of bread. My kids eat sandwiches on this bread almost daily and love it. The week I bought bread due to time constraints, there was a full-scale revolt.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #27 on: April 09, 2015, 09:14:03 AM »
How well does it go in the 9X5 pans? I've seen more than a few recipes that call for a 12" pan, and they sell for mucho bucks on Amazon. I really don't want a $20 pan for an experiment. Although that would make a loaf that matches the dimensions of store bought.

dycker1978

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2015, 09:17:44 AM »
http://anoregoncottage.com/whole-wheat-sandwich-bread-101/

I use this.  Cheap, easy to make, and delicious.

NYCWife

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2015, 09:38:46 AM »
I too had struggled in the past when cooking with yeast. I took a couple cooking classes and learned the valuable lesson of liquid temperature--warm enough to activate the yeast without being too hot and killing it. Basically, the liquid temperature should be a little warmer than your body temperature (like a warm bath).

Now, I swear by this recipe from King Arthur Flour. It makes 2 great-sized loaves at a time for sandwiches and has worked for me every time I made it (also, no weird ingredients):

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/vermont-whole-wheat-oatmeal-honey-bread-recipe

Good luck!

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #30 on: April 10, 2015, 08:10:09 AM »
I used the King Arthur classic white sandwich bread when I started making bread regularly. I have since tweaked it, skipping the milk powder and using a 50/50 split of milk and water for the liquid and using a mixture of whole wheat and unbleached bread flours, but used as written, it is a simple, very good loaf of bread. My kids eat sandwiches on this bread almost daily and love it. The week I bought bread due to time constraints, there was a full-scale revolt.

Gave this one a try last night. With a little tweaking it should be perfect. Came out salty and broke in half, but it has really good potential!

It rose beautifully...



But broke in half as it came out of the pan. No it didn't stick. I think its because I used olive oil to prevent it from sticking to the bowl during the first rise, then when I folded the dough over to form the loaf, I must have made a fault line in it - I think the oil prevented the bread from bonding.



However, it has the right shape and structure for us. I think next time I'll try backing off on the salt a little and add in a bit of whole wheat flour (maybe 1/4 cup) to give it taste. Have you tried substituting Molasses for the honey, or would that be taking things too far?
« Last Edit: April 10, 2015, 08:11:47 AM by Prospector »

TRBeck

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #31 on: April 10, 2015, 08:44:46 AM »
I used the King Arthur classic white sandwich bread when I started making bread regularly. I have since tweaked it, skipping the milk powder and using a 50/50 split of milk and water for the liquid and using a mixture of whole wheat and unbleached bread flours, but used as written, it is a simple, very good loaf of bread. My kids eat sandwiches on this bread almost daily and love it. The week I bought bread due to time constraints, there was a full-scale revolt.

Gave this one a try last night. With a little tweaking it should be perfect. Came out salty and broke in half, but it has really good potential!

It rose beautifully...



But broke in half as it came out of the pan. No it didn't stick. I think its because I used olive oil to prevent it from sticking to the bowl during the first rise, then when I folded the dough over to form the loaf, I must have made a fault line in it - I think the oil prevented the bread from bonding.



However, it has the right shape and structure for us. I think next time I'll try backing off on the salt a little and add in a bit of whole wheat flour (maybe 1/4 cup) to give it taste. Have you tried substituting Molasses for the honey, or would that be taking things too far?

Yeah, that's just a technique tweak. It looks like you'll be in good shape long-term.

I agree that it's a bit salty; I forgot to say that I knock that salt amount down to 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 tsp. instead. As for molasses, I have never been a fan of using it in bread. However, that's probably just personal preference. I have, however, subbed soymilk for the milk (great! actually a bit softer texture), turbinado and plain ol' sugar for the honey (not a problem, but you will have to slightly up your liquids), and a whole range of flours. I make two loaves every weekend, so a total of 8 c. of flour for my big batch of dough. I use 2 c. unbleached AP flour, 3 c. ww flour, and 3 c. bread flour. The extra protein in the bread flour helps compensate for the effect the ww flour can have on the dough rising and the texture of the finished loaf.

NYCWife

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #32 on: April 10, 2015, 10:26:44 AM »
However, it has the right shape and structure for us. I think next time I'll try backing off on the salt a little and add in a bit of whole wheat flour (maybe 1/4 cup) to give it taste. Have you tried substituting Molasses for the honey, or would that be taking things too far?

My mom grew up Mennonite and has baked bread since she was young. She and I were JUST talking about bread recipes today and she shared that the following sweeteners can be used interchangeably in bread recipes: honey, molasses, and brown sugar. She was chiding me for using honey (which she says dries out the bread too much).

So, according to my mom, my go-to source for baking, YES you can substitute molasses for honey.

Also, did you know that King Arthur Flour has a hotline that you can call and get help (or probably email too)? They seem SUPER helpful when you scroll through the comments/reviews in their recipe section of their website.

ngakara

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #33 on: April 13, 2015, 04:13:16 AM »
500ml warm water (not hot, but cold is ok)
add 1 tablespoon salt
and 1 tablespoon yeast

add 6 cups (approx) of flour (seeds and flavours can be added too)

mix with spoon until all flour incorporated.

leave overnight or even as little as one hour

using wet hands pull off a palm sized amount.
fold dough into itself until it looks smoother. (about 3 times)

bake at 180 deg Celsius for about 20 min, or until lightly browned and sounding hollow when tapped.
makes 6



or tip the dough onto tray and flatten slightly.  takes longer to bake, maybe 30 min

dough can be kept for a couple of days, it starts to get more of a sourdough effect. if it crusts over, don't worry just mix it in

these are new zealand metric measurements

BCar

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #34 on: April 13, 2015, 01:54:45 PM »
If you really are having disasters, try beer bread for awhile: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/beer-bread-i/


Doesn't matter how crappy the beer, either., so you can use the cheap stuff. (Add another cup of flour if you go so cheap you get 16 oz. cans). Dark beer will change the taste, so you have some control there. No worries for kids; the alcohol cooks off.

I was going to mention beer bread as well. I LOVE it! It's so easy and tastes amazing. It's probably not quite as cheep as regular bread, but that's almost irrelevant since my bread always turns out poorly anyways. I really like this recipe:

http://www.food.com/recipe/beer-bread-73440

PatStab

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #35 on: April 13, 2015, 08:50:39 PM »
Get a book called "No More Bricks" if you want good wheat bread. 

It tells you how to make it and has good recipes.  The one recipe I really like uses honey for the sweetener.  Also for wheat bread that will rise well it calls for dough enchancer and wheat gluten.  Whole wheat is different in making then white. 

I get those 2 items from Lehman's, also buy wheat from them in 25 pound buckets.  Haven't made much this year, I LOVE bread and have been dieting.  I can eat half a loaf when it comes out of the oven,  yummy, not a way to lose weight for sure!

I have a flour mill and grind my own flour for the whole wheat bread.  I buy unbleached unenhanced white flour for white bread, don't grind it. I like just plain ground wheat, otherwise manufacturers take all the nutrients out then replace them, natural is bet in my book.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #36 on: April 14, 2015, 08:23:11 AM »
So after finding success with the King Arthur classic recipe and gleaning the bits about temperature, time, and yeast here, I tried making one of my all-time favourite breads last night.

http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/old-fashioned-brown-bread

Guess what - it worked! I now have 2 beautiful loaves waiting for me to get home and eat them at lunch. Here's hoping it tastes as good as it looks. Now I have to do a price per loaf comparison and see if the King Arthur bread will be the staple, or if I can justify the Molasses-oatmeal bread on price. With my luck, the oatmeal bread will cost more than storebought.

Dicey

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #37 on: April 15, 2015, 04:25:58 PM »
Well, it looks like you're well on your way, Prospector, but I highly recommend checking out one of my favorite blogs, The Frugal Girl, for awesome bread-making tips, troubleshooting and recipes. The first two articles that pop up are sure to be useful to you. If you poke around a little, there's even a video that shows you how to knead bread perfectly. Good luck!

http://www.thefrugalgirl.com/?s=bread+baking+basics

cerebus

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #38 on: April 16, 2015, 02:56:38 AM »
I have heard that a bread making machine is a wonderful sort of a contraption and you can get them cheaply secondhand. It's on my list of things to get for sure.

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #39 on: April 16, 2015, 06:32:05 AM »
I have heard that a bread making machine is a wonderful sort of a contraption and you can get them cheaply secondhand. It's on my list of things to get for sure.

That was goin gto be my next step if this didn't work out. $15 for a used machine online right now. Similar to the cost of new 12" bread pan. Since I can make things work with our existing pans and hand made bread, thats $40 (two bread pans) I can put in the bank on top of about $5 weekly for savings in bread (at $1.50 savings per loaf, and we go through 3+ loafs a week). :)

$40+(5*52)=$300 this year
5*52=$260 per year ongoing.

cerebus

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #40 on: April 16, 2015, 06:36:10 AM »
I have heard that a bread making machine is a wonderful sort of a contraption and you can get them cheaply secondhand. It's on my list of things to get for sure.

That was goin gto be my next step if this didn't work out. $15 for a used machine online right now. Similar to the cost of new 12" bread pan. Since I can make things work with our existing pans and hand made bread, thats $40 (two bread pans) I can put in the bank on top of about $5 weekly for savings in bread (at $1.50 savings per loaf, and we go through 3+ loafs a week). :)

$40+(5*52)=$300 this year
5*52=$260 per year ongoing.

Yes but similarly to a slow cooker the power it uses is much lower than an oven so you're saving in the long run on electricity. What's your thoughts on that?


Hm now I look around I can see some nice looking crock pot bread recipes. I'm going to try that and see how it goes. Those things are ultra-frugal; I think they use the same power as a light bulb or something.

http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-easy-bread-in-a-slow-cooker-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-192421
« Last Edit: April 16, 2015, 06:54:19 AM by cerebus »

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #41 on: April 17, 2015, 06:41:24 AM »
When I'm down I can't get up...

Last night I sat down and spread-sheeted what exactly it costs per loaf to make each of these recipes. I'm hoping I made an error in unit conversions or something, because its depressing.

Plain white bread and molasses oatmeal bread both have the same per-loaf cost. Well, they are within 2 cents of each other. That's not good or bad news - it just means I have options.

The bad news is that not including energy costs (thanks Cerebus), it costs $1.75 CAD in ingredients to make each loaf. I was surprised. My math in my previous post was based on a WAG of $0.50 per loaf for home made. Store bought bread is normally $2.00 per loaf (http://www.rexall.ca/eflyer - pg 8, Wonder Bread white or whole wheat). It sometimes comes on sale for $1.50.

So once you add in energy/time, I'm actually coming out further ahead to buy bread than make it. I know you guys are going to chime in with health benefits and having control over what the family is eating, etc. And to be fair, the oatmeal bread is far higher quality than store-bought loaf bread, but getting down to raw numbers - which is where we are in our budget, I can stuff my face on either with equal fervour, and for straight up economics, store bought comes out ahead.

Bummer, dude. I was having a good time with this.

RelaxedGal

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #42 on: April 17, 2015, 07:47:02 AM »
But broke in half as it came out of the pan. No it didn't stick. I think its because I used olive oil to prevent it from sticking to the bowl during the first rise, then when I folded the dough over to form the loaf, I must have made a fault line in it - I think the oil prevented the bread from bonding.

My mom used a similar recipe for our bread when I was a kid.  To form the loaves, after punching it down she would spread it on the counter about 9" wide and roll it up jelly-roll style to fit in the 9x5" loaf pan.  And yes, sometimes you could unroll it, interesting feature for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches ;-)

Last night I sat down and spread-sheeted what exactly it costs per loaf to make each of these recipes. I'm hoping I made an error in unit
The bad news is that not including energy costs (thanks Cerebus), it costs $1.75 CAD in ingredients to make each loaf. I was surprised. My math in my previous post was based on a WAG of $0.50 per loaf for home made. Store bought bread is normally $2.00 per loaf (http://www.rexall.ca/eflyer - pg 8, Wonder Bread white or whole wheat). It sometimes comes on sale for $1.50.

So once you add in energy/time, I'm actually coming out further ahead to buy bread than make it.

Bummer, dude. I was having a good time with this.

Maybe wholesale club flour (Costco, etc.) would be worthwhile, since you're enjoying it?

Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #43 on: April 17, 2015, 07:52:39 AM »

Maybe wholesale club flour (Costco, etc.) would be worthwhile, since you're enjoying it?

Good point - my cost estimate was based entirely on prices from the Walmart Canada website. Shopping sales would bring things down somewhat. Also we have a wholesale/bulk place in town that can usually beat walmart by 1/3 at least - but thats where I am already getting $1.50 a loaf bread. :(

cerebus

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #44 on: April 17, 2015, 08:52:56 AM »
So once you add in energy/time, I'm actually coming out further ahead to buy bread than make it. I know you guys are going to chime in with health benefits and having control over what the family is eating, etc. And to be fair, the oatmeal bread is far higher quality than store-bought loaf bread, but getting down to raw numbers - which is where we are in our budget, I can stuff my face on either with equal fervour, and for straight up economics, store bought comes out ahead.

Bummer, dude. I was having a good time with this.

I seem to recall from my time living in the States that your store-bought bread is utter crap. It has zero nutritional value and Dorian Gray-like age defying properties. I wouldn't compare that kind of bread to what you can make at home, and I wouldn't even consider eating it as part of a regular diet. Also, low GM home made bread will fill you up much more than store bought (and pure rye bread is dwarvish in consistency), so you will need to eat less.

This is not a game of raw numbers, you are taking control over what you put in your body and eating properly versus eating automatically. Actually, you should rather simply cut out store bread altogether and find another source of food, if you can't make it work with home baked bread. And from the raw numbers perspective, you should really consider it as nutritional numbers, as 1 loaf is not the same quality as another and you're really optimising your body's dietary needs. Don't give up on it so quickly.

southern granny

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #45 on: April 19, 2015, 07:41:28 PM »
When I'm down I can't get up...

The bad news is that not including energy costs (thanks Cerebus), it costs $1.75 CAD in ingredients to make each loaf. I was surprised. My math in my previous post was based on a WAG of $0.50 per loaf for home made. Store bought bread is normally $2.00 per loaf (http://www.rexall.ca/eflyer - pg 8, Wonder Bread white or whole wheat). It sometimes comes on sale for $1.50.

Bummer, dude. I was having a good time with this.

Would you share your figures?  I don't think it costs me more than fifty cents.  But I am not figuring in the oven energy costs.. I have no idea what that would be.

mtnrider

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #46 on: April 19, 2015, 09:04:02 PM »
If you really are having disasters, try beer bread for awhile: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/beer-bread-i/


Doesn't matter how crappy the beer, either., so you can use the cheap stuff. (Add another cup of flour if you go so cheap you get 16 oz. cans). Dark beer will change the taste, so you have some control there. No worries for kids; the alcohol cooks off.

I was going to mention beer bread as well. I LOVE it! It's so easy and tastes amazing. It's probably not quite as cheep as regular bread, but that's almost irrelevant since my bread always turns out poorly anyways. I really like this recipe:

http://www.food.com/recipe/beer-bread-73440


Third on this... try it!  There's also some Irish Soda Water breads you can try too.

Also, a second hand breadmaker is super cheap, and easy to use.  If you want, just have it make the dough and throw that in the oven, either as rolls or in a bread pan.


Le Poisson

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Re: Bread that DOESN'T suck
« Reply #47 on: April 20, 2015, 06:43:26 AM »
When I'm down I can't get up...

The bad news is that not including energy costs (thanks Cerebus), it costs $1.75 CAD in ingredients to make each loaf. I was surprised. My math in my previous post was based on a WAG of $0.50 per loaf for home made. Store bought bread is normally $2.00 per loaf (http://www.rexall.ca/eflyer - pg 8, Wonder Bread white or whole wheat). It sometimes comes on sale for $1.50.

Bummer, dude. I was having a good time with this.

Would you share your figures?  I don't think it costs me more than fifty cents.  But I am not figuring in the oven energy costs.. I have no idea what that would be.


I redid my pricing following a trip to a wholesale restaurant supplier - massive difference! Not sure how well this will cut/paste...

Wholesale Club                                    
        Units   Size       Price       Recipe Units   "recipe units per package"   Cost per unit      Oatmeal bread         White Bread   
Honey   kg   3       $21.97    tbsp                150                                       $0.15                         0    $-                           1    $0.15
Yeast   g   450         $5.79    tsp                142.8571429                       $0.04                         5    $0.20              2.25    $0.09
Salt           g   1000      $0.95    tsp                166.6666667                       $0.01                         2    $0.01              1.75    $0.01
Margarine   kg   3.17         $7.67    tbsp                233.7758112                       $0.03                         8    $0.26                 2    $0.07
Flour      kg   20        $13.97    cups                166.6666667                       $0.08                         6    $0.50                 4    $0.34
Milk            lt   4         $3.89    cups               16                                       $0.24                         0    $-         0.333333333    $0.08
Oats           kg   10       $19.99    cups                111.1111111                       $0.18                         1    $0.18                 0    $-   
Molasses   kg   5       $11.49    cups                 14.70588235                       $0.78       0.333333333    $0.26                 0    $-   
                                    
   TOTAL                                                                                                                                $0.71                   $0.36