Thursday, December 13, 2012

Making Bread

I've been baking our bread for close to a year now. I've tried different flours, different recipes, different techniques but they never turned out like the pictures and what I've seen other home made breads look like. I visit teach a lady who makes her own bread for her family of seven. She even grinds her own wheat! I thought if she can do it with 5 kids I can definitely do it for our (then) family of 3. I wanted something that was healthier than what you can find in the store and that didn't have preservatives. Plus I thought it would be a fun thing to do.

Except for the first few whole wheat loaves I made before I was told about wheat gluten they have all been edible and taste delicious. Wheat gluten is a must when making whole wheat breads! Although my bread tasted great it didn't rise and look as full as I wanted it to be. Finally after a year I decided to watch some youtube videos watching professionals making bread. I figured I could learn a few tips from them. Here are the things I learned:

  • One, bread making is a longer process than I was making it. I wasn't kneading it long enough.
  • Two, you must make sure your water isn't too cold or too hot.
  • Three, I wasn't adding enough flour and my dough was too sticky.
  • Four, even though recipes say you can knead it in the kitchen aid the bread turns out much better if you knead it by hand.
  • Shaping the dough into a ball and oiling the bowl before rising the dough helps to make the bread look prettier.
  • Two rises is crucial.
  • Shaping the dough into a loaf shape before putting it into the pan also makes a prettier loaf.
  • One recipe I had said to put a clean towel on the dough when it's rising in the pan but that prevented the loaf from rising above the pan sides. The video I watched didn't do that so I stopped.
  • Don't make the dough rise to quickly by putting it on a heating pad. The bread deflates in the oven.
This makes bread making seem like a really hard process but it's not. You only have to do it a few times to get a feel for the dough and try a few different techniques. Once you figured it out then it's easy!

I'm writing this post because I finally had a break through with my bread loaves! I'm so glad I watched those youtube videos because now I can say I have great tasting and great looking bread! See for yourself:

I bet you can tell which bread is the good and which is the bad. I'm so thrilled to finally have a good looking bread! I've been trying to achieve that rounded top for a year now. Thank you youtube! You're a bread saver! Now we'll continue to enjoy some delicious and healthy home made bread.

1 comment:

Book Dragon said...

looks delicious! Will you share the recipe?