Thursday, February 10, 2022

Sinful Cinnamon Buns

 These are so easy it is sinful... but taste like heaven.

Start with making the dough.

1. I used a stand mixer but a hand mixture should be great as well. Combine 2 cups of flour, 1/3 cup of white sugar, 4-1/2 teaspoons of yeast (2 packages)(yes that's a lot of yeast) and 1 teaspoon of salt and blend them. 

2. Then take 1-1/2 cups of water and 6 tablespoons of butter/margarine and microwave them together for 2 rounds of 15 secs until quite warm but not hot. Dump the whole thing into the flour mixture along with an egg. 

3. Beat for 2 minutes at medium speed gradually adding another cup of flour. Stop and scrape down the walls of the bowl, then beat another 2 minutes on high. Add enough flour to gradually have the dough form a ball (about another half cup to a cup should do it)

4. Turn out and knead it by hand for 6-8 minutes until the dough feels smooth (you will likely need to add flour as you knead the dough, it will be sticky). Form a ball and cover the dough for a 10 minutes nap.

5. The filling is simple, 1/3 cup of sugar and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, mixed together. Soften 3 tablespoons butter/margarine to spread on the dough.

6. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 10 by 15 inch square (25 by 38 cm). I always measure it to be sure. Spread the butter/margarine over the dough staying back about a half inch on the long sides. Sprinkle the sugar/cinnamon mixture evenly over the dough (i always press the sugar into the dough a bit to keep it in place),

7 Working from the long edge, roll the dough tightly and evenly as possible and pinch the seams to make a log. Cut the log into 12 pieces (I used dental floss as a cutting garrot, worked great and didn't compress the dough)

8. Gently place the cut dough into a 13 by 9 inch greased baking pan (I also use parchment, these can really stick to a pan). With cut side up (which ever side looks prettier). 

9. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about an hour.

10. Pre heat the oven to 350. Bake for 25-30 minutes (I took the whole 30 minutes and sometimes even a bit more). They should be starting to turn golden brown on top.


11. Carefully turn out onto a cooling rack and let sit for at least 20 minutes.

12. While you are waiting mix 2-1/2 cups of icing sugar, 2 tablespoons butter/margarine 2 to 3 tablespoons of milk 1 teaspoon of vanilla until smooth. 

13. Spread that sweet icing over those delicious buns and enjoy!! 

By the way... once the icing sets try separating them and freezing them... when you take them out of the freezer microwave for about 30 seconds and wash them down with a nice cup of coffee :-) 

Friday, January 28, 2022

The Easy Way to have Baguettes Today


This is a very clean and simple recipe to have hot baguettes ready for supper. It really is this easy.

1. Combine 3 cups of flour (all purpose unbleached is what I used), 1 to 1 & 1/4 cups of lukewarm water, 2 teaspoons of yeast, and 1&1/2 teaspoons of salt in a large bowl and mix manually until you have a shaggy dough evenly hydrated (just takes a minute or two)

2. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 30 minutes

3. Knead the dough by hand (about 10 mins) or mixer (about 7 mins) until smooth. Transfer it to a lightly greased bowl and cover. Let it rise for about 90 minutes (they always say until doubled in size but I have no idea how to measure that in real life so I go by time).

4. Fold the dough over on itself several times (I actually kneaded it just for a minute or so) then return it to the bowl and let it proof for another 90 minutes. 

5. Divide the dough into three portions  (I recommend actually weighing them to get them as even weight as possible). Roll them into balls and let them rest for 5-10 minutes. 

6, Shape your baguettes. If you don't have a method already, I found this video works well  https://www.kingarthurbaking.com/videos/baking-skills/how-to-shape-a-baguette  

7. Gently place your baguettes on parchment on a baking sheet or if you are using a baking stone in the oven, just on the parchment and use your peel to place them in the oven when ready. I used a baking stone and pizza peel, so just placed them on parchment. Cover the baguettes for the final rise, it takes about an hour. 

8. Preheat the over to 450F 

9. When the baguettes are ready, the dimple you make by pushing your finger into the dough, should linger afterward, then you are ready. 

10. Make 3 diagonal slices in each and slide them into the oven, give them a good spray of water just as you are closing the oven on them. 

11. Bake at 450F for about 20-25 minutes (I was closer to 25) they should be a deep golden brown on top. 

12. Now you have 2 options, you can cool them on a rack on the counter, or you can turn off the oven, take the pan out but return the baguettes to the oven directly on the rack to let them cool (with the oven door cracked open a couple inches). Either way, you should get great results. 

Try to wait until they are cooled to cut them... good luck with that :-) 
 



Wednesday, August 25, 2021

 So Simple, So Good Bread

This is such a simple loaf that turns out so great I almost think I should keep it a secret 😊 

I have been looking to have a quick and easy way to have a high quality loaf of bread in under 3 hours and I think this may be it. The key is to use a few shortcuts without any feelings of guilt, effort isn't the only way to create quality, sometimes just thinking it through and using the right options can work.

Here's how to do it... take all the ingredients listed below (I got them all in a standard grocery store), throw them into your bread maker on the dough setting (in the order recommended by your machine, typically wet to dry).  

When it is completed, take the dough and form two equal sized balls and let them sit for 5 minutes (I don't know why, just every recipe seems to say that, apparently the dough needs to rest ).  Then shape them into two batards (torpedo shaped loaves) and cover them with plastic wrap sprayed with Pam or something similar.  Let them sit for about 45 minutes on parchment paper (they are ready when you poke them with your finger and the dent remains). Being on parchment paper makes it easy to move them into the oven, just keep the loaves on the paper,  In the meantime fire up your over to 450 degrees and have a spray bottle of water on hand. If you have a baking stone (or pizza stone) put that in the oven when you turn it on, if not you can use a baking pan without pre-heating.  When the dough is ready, slash it with a razor blade or very sharp knife (3 diagonal slices are a good way to start, play with that on future loaves), slide the loaves into the oven (a pizza paddle is ideal but you can use any flat pan).  Immediately spray the loaves and the oven with your spray bottle and shut the oven quickly to not lose too much heat. Bake for 25 minutes (internal temperature of the loaves should exceed 200 degrees if you have a thermometer for that, otherwise 25 minutes should do it).  Turn the oven off and crack the door, but don't remove the loaves for another 5 minutes.  Let them cool on a rack for as long as you can endure.  Once totally cooled I usually slice one and put it in the freezer for future
use (great toast right out of the freezer).  ENJOY.

Ingredients

-1 and 2/3 Cups of water

-1 tablespoon of sugar

-2 and 1/2 teaspoons of salt

-4 and 1/2 cups unbleached white flour

-Half a cup of 12-grain cereal (uncooked) (I use Speerville Mills St John Valley Cereal)

-2 tablespoons of gluten (I use Fleishman's Bread Booster) 

-2 and 1/4 teaspoons of dry yeast (I use Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast)

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Indecision Bread

I was looking to bake some bread for toast and sandwiches and couldn't decide between, using oatmeal, bran or 12-grain cereal in the recipe so, in the end I just put them all in, and am I ever glad I did, the result was delicious.  It is really easy to make, I used my bread maker to make the dough then baked it in the oven in a longer loaf pan.  I'm sure it would work equally as well in a mixer or by hand. 

It really is simple.  Load the ingredients in your bread maker in the order below (or as instructor by your machine instructions).  Use the dough cycle, when finished shape the loaf and put it in a greased pan to rise (45 mins to an hour for me).  When you can poke it gently and leave a dent it is ready to go.  Bake in the oven at 375 for about 35 minutes until the internal temperature is 200.  Then turn out onto a rack to cool.  Enjoy 

Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 cups water
  • 3 tbsp powdered milk
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp molasses
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 cups white flour
  • 1/4 cup of oats
  • 1/4 cup of bran
  • 1/4 cup of 12-grain cereal
  • 1 1/4 tsp yeast
  • 2 tablespoons of Bread Enhancer (gluten) (Optional)  


Tuesday, December 29, 2020


Faux Sourdough

 The Simplest Sourdough you could ever make!  Is it as good as true sourdough? Not really, but it is very close with only a portion of the time and effort sourdough requires. 

This truly is a very simple just throw all the ingredients in your mixer, with the beater paddle to start, then switch to the dough hook and knead it for 7 minutes. You could likely use a bread machine to mix the dough as well, but I haven't tried it. 

Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and let rise for about 90 minutes.  Then turn it out on a lightly floured surface and divide into two equal parts (I always weigh it to get even loaves).  Shape the loaves as you prefer, I tried both boules and batards and they were equally successful.  Let the loaves rise for about an hour or until a finger poke leaves a lasting dent in the bread. I baked these in a very hot oven of 450 for 30 minutes but you need to watch them for burning on the top, it might be wise to go a bit lower and longer.  Providing some steam is a good idea as well, I just spray the hot oven with a mister when I slide the loaves in.  These were baked on a steel slab but a pizza stone would work fine.  The boule was done in a Dutch oven.  

Ingredients

4.5 cups Unbleached Flour

1 tablespoon sugar

2.5 teaspoons salt

1 2/3 cups of lukewarm water

THE SECRET INGREDIENT

1 package (18 gms) Platinum Instant Sourdough (Yeast and Sourdough Culture) If your grocery store doesn't have this you can order it on Amazon. 



Monday, October 26, 2020


 12-Grain Bread

This is a variation of a recipe I use often, it starts in the bread maker then comes out to be shaped as a loaf for the oven.  This particular loaf was done in a longer pan to make a nice sandwich/toast size slice. 

I used bread enhancer for this one (basically additional gluten), sold as Fleischman Bread Enhance locally but any gluten should work fine. 



1 2/3 cups water
3 tbsp powdered milk
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp molasses
2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups white flour
3/4 cup 12 grain cereal uncooked
1 1/4 tsp yeast
5 tsp gluten 

After the bread machine complete the dough cycle, shape a loaf and put it in a lightly oiled loaf pan.  Let rise 1-1.5 hours covered with an oiled piece of plastic wrap.
Bake at 375 for 40 minutes, then when you remove the loaf, rub the top with butter to stop it from drying it out (that's from my Mom). 

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Quarantine Bread



I am home under self-quarantine for Covid-19 after International travel so had some time on my hands and no groceries in the cupboards.  I threw this in the bread making on dough setting:


1- 2/3 Cups of skim milk
2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp molasses
2 tsp salt
1-1/4 cup whole wheat flour
2-1/2 cup unbleached white flour
3/4 cup mix of flax and chia seed
1-1/4 tsp yeast

After the dough cycle is done, either put in in a loaf pan (I used a sandwich length loaf pan, I love those) or shape it into a batard (torpedo shape).  Let it rise for about 90-120 minutes.

Bake at 375 for about 40 minutes (internal temperature of 200 degrees is a good sign).

                                                                Cool on a rack as long as you can stand it.