I did it! I really and truly baked a real live loaf of bread. I feel like I should be wearing a superwoman cape right now. Because it even tastes good. Shocking, I know.
After my rock-hard non-rising attempt at bread-making yesterday, I decided not to give up. I drove to the grocery store, bought some fresh (not expired this time) yeast, and found a different recipe.
It's okay that the loaves came out of the oven at 11:00 p.m. last night, right? It's okay that the bread wasn't ready for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, right? At least we had a midnight snack of bread and butter and now I have two fresh loaves to
get fat on munch on for the next few days. Yay!
Even though I secretly wanted to choose a thick, white, super fattening bread recipe, I decided to be healthy and found a recipe that had some oats in it. Oats always sound healthy.
So here is the recipe (with a few small changes that I made after reading the comments and reviews).
Honey Oat Bread
Adapted from: Bon Appetit (November 2001) found at Epicurious
Makes: 2 small loaves
1 3/4 cups warm water (105°F to 110°F)1 tablespoon dry yeast
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
1/3 cup honey
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 1/2 teaspoons salt (I only used 1 1/2 tsps of salt)
5 cups (about) all purpose flour
1 large egg, beaten to blend
Additional quick-cooking oats
1. Stir 1/4 cup warm water and yeast in large bowl. Let stand 10 minutes to dissolve yeast.
2. Stir in remaining 1 1/2 cups water, 3/4 cup oats, honey, oil, and salt. Stir in enough flour to form soft dough.
I used my kitchenaid stand mixer to mix the ingredients together. Once mixed, I kneaded the dough on speed 2 until the dough clung to the dough hook in a big clump.
3. Coat another large bowl with oil/butter. Transfer dough to greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel and let rise at room temperature until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
I turned my oven on to 150 degrees, turned it off, opened the door for 30 seconds, and then placed the bowl of dough inside to warm. The original recipe said to let rise for 1 hour but it took almost 2 full hours.
4. Grease two 8 1/2x4 1/2x2 1/2-inch loaf pans. Punch down dough; shape into 2 loaves. Place 1 loaf in each pan. Cover and let rise in warm draft-free area until almost doubled in volume, about 45 minutes.
5. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush tops of loaves with egg; sprinkle with additional oats. Bake until brown on top and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool completely.
P.S. When I first wrote about my mini-goal of learning how to bake bread, lots of you left some tips and recipes for me to try in the comments section. THANK YOU!!! I'm hoping to try all of your recipe suggestions as soon as I'm off work. Six more weeks, baby, six more weeks. :)