Thursday, April 09, 2009

Artisan Bread

I love really good bread. We have a local bakery that makes beautiful, wood-fired loaves. I have to admit that, after eating that wonderful crusty goodness, plain old bread from the supermarket has lost it's appeal for me. Unfortunately, those pretty loaves from the bakery cost $3 to $6 each.

Happily my mother gave me a book for my birthday called, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. The whole premise behind this book is that you mix up a large batch of wet dough and store it in the fridge. Then it is easy to just lop off some dough and bake a loaf whenever you want to. The "Five Minutes" doesn't include the time the dough needs to rest or baking time. Five minutes is about how long you have to mess with it if you want to make a loaf from the batch.

To make the Batch, stir the ingredients together and let them rise in a plastic container with a lid. I want to get one of those food grade 6 qt mixing buckets. Right now I use a Tupperware container.

When you are in the mood for some crusty nirvana, lop off some dough and quickly shape it into a flatish ball. Then walk away and let the dough take a little rest. Just about long enough for you to get in a capnap of your own.

This bread needs steam to make a proper crust. This is easily achieved by adding a cup of water to a pan on the shelf beneath the bread.

Bake in a hot oven and try not to drool while waiting for the timer.

I was amazed at how easy this bread is to make and how good it tastes. The loaf came out crusty on the outside and chewy on the inside. Let's just say it didn't last long.

This morning Master Munchkin asked, "Mom, will you make that yummy bread again?"

Yes son. Yes, I will. And if you're lucky, I'll save you a piece.

You can try it out here.


Alisa said...

I've heard so much about this book. Might have to get it myself, that bread looks so yummy!

MrsMama said...

Alisa - you should. If *I* can do this, anyone can. :)

Katharine said...

I think I want that cookbook, because I KNOW I want that bread. Yummy! But I also know I don't "knead" those carbs. tee hee

Rechelle said...

So much bettah than say a store bought roll that you have to pick the mold off of.

MrsMama said...

Katharine, ah - is that the secret to your girlish figure?

Rechelle, true. But a jar of jam covers many sins. You didn't hear me complaining... :)

Anonymous said...

This book is awesome. Who knew baking bread could be so 'simplified',! Now if I could just get a lettuce garden going year round... the money we'd save in groceries. :)