Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Bread - two variations one dough

Hey Crushers!

Remember that photo of me hugging my brand new KitchenAid Mixer? Well, I put it to good use this past weekend to make bread. The mixer comes with a handy recipe book, so I thought I'd give this a try. Plus, I really wanted to see how the dough hook worked. The recipe says you can make two loaves with this and it gives you suggestions for other things. I went with one loaf of bread and then some bread sticks which I ended up putting in a freezer bag to save for later.

1/2C (4 oz.) milk
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons butter
2 (1/4 ounce) packages active dry yeast or 2 teaspoons fast-acting/instant east (.34 oz.)
1 1/2 C (12 oz.) warm water (105F to 110F)
5-6 C Unbleached bread flour (I used regular flour and that worked fine)

Get it all ready to go!
Combine milk, sugar, salt, and butter in small saucepan. Heat over low heat and stir until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Cool to lukewarm (less than 110 F).

If using active dry yeast, dissolve yeast in warm water in warmed bowl and let stand for 10 minutes. If using Instant/fast-acting Yeast, just add it to the flour and mix it in before adding liquids. Make sure you still heat up the water otherwise it could be too chilly for the yeast. I went with the fast-acting yeast and it really worked!

See how it hangs on to the hook? So cool! Also, see all the flour on the top of bowl.
I told you it would fly!
Add lukewarm milk mixture and water to 4 1/2 C  flour. Attach bowl and dough hook. Make sure you have the top locked in place. Turn to speed 2 and mix 1 minute. Continuing on speed 2, add remaining flour, 1/2 C at a time (slowly so it doesn’t fly out of bowl because it will fly!), until dough clings to hook and cleans side of bowl. Knead on speed 2 for 2 minutes longer, or until dough is smooth and stretchy. Dough will be slightly sticky to the touch.

All the dough in the bowl.
Place in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk, about an hour. I was amazed at how huge my dough got. Steve had fun coming in the kitchen and punching it down.

See how high above the bowl it got?!
Punch dough down and divide in half. Shape each half into a loaf and place in a greased 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pan. Cover; let rise in warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. OR only make one loaf and let it rise.

About-to-be bread stick
While that's happening, take the other half and roll it out flat until it is about 12 inches by 9 inches. Cut it with a sharp knife into 1 inch strips. Roll each end in the opposite direction. Pick up the ends and bring them together. The dough should spin around itself making braid-looking bread sticks.

You can bake them both at the same time for the same time and temperature.
Bake at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes. Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire racks.

Yum! Sandwich (or French toast) ready.

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