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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Family Bread


I used to visit http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/ a lot. She has a lot of great ideas, recipes and frugal menu plans, even if they don't exactly work cost-wise here. I have made this before and decided to make some today. I wasn't able to get to the bread store, so why not. The differences I made were I used 1.5 cups of 12 grain cereal and 1.5 cups of flax meal and a little more water and maybe some more flour. It made 3 loaves and 2 pizzas for me. It's not done cooking yet but it sure smells yummy!

BTW, the commentary is all from the website, not mine :)

Family Bread
  • 4 cups warm tap water (not hot)
  • 2/3 cup non-fat dry milk powder (instant powdered milk)
  • 1/3 cup sugar or 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 packets or 4 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/3 cup melted margarine or oil
  • 12 cups (approximately) white or whole wheat flour or a combination

The first thing you need is a big bowl or clean dish pan to mix this up in. Mix the water, dry milk powder and sugar in the dishpan or bowl. Add the yeast, sort of sprinkled on top. Allow the mixture to sit until the yeast dissolves some, this will only take a couple of minutes. Add the salt, margarine or oil, and flour. Mix with a wooden spoon until it gets too stiff and then dig in with your hands. When the dough is in a nice cohesive ball, turn it out onto a floured kitchen table or counter. Or if you are using a dish pan, you can just leave it in there.

Now start kneading the dough with all of the love you have for your family. Press the dough and send big love vibes into it. Stretch the dough and impress all of your compassion and generosity into it. Remember why you love your kids, and your spouse and your mom or you dad, and just put it all into the dough. Knead it like this for a full ten minutes. Add more flour if you need to as you go along.

Coat the dough with oil, about 2 tablespoons of it, and put it into the bowl or dishpan. Cover it with a towel or plastic wrap and let it set in a warm place to rise for about an hour or so. It should double in bulk. It may take up to two hours on cool days, or in the air conditioning, so be patient.

Punch down the dough by literally pressing your fist into the center of it. Divide the dough into 4 equal lumps. Coax them into loaf shapes and place them into large (9 by 5-inch) well oiled loaf pans. If you don't have enough loaf pans, use casserole pans or cake pans, or whatever. Cover the dough with a cloth or more plastic wrap and let it rise again. It should take less time for the second rising. When the dough is risen up enough, bake the loaves at 350° for 40 minutes.

You can tell the dough is done if you turn it out of the pan and thump the bottom with your finger. It should make a dull hollow sound. If it doesn't sound hollow, put it back into the pan and cook it some more. Makes four loaves.

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