community group sub-forums > foodie furs

Home made bread. From traditional to no knead refrigerator.

(1/19) > >>

cause the rat:
I love home made bread. A few simple ingredients and techniques. A bit of time and patients. You end up with flavor that is unapproachable by any mass produced bread. With nothing more than slight changes between recipes. Adding butter. shortening or eggs and you end up with even more flavors and textures. Unlike store bought bread home made really doesn't last that long.  A few days to a week at best. It's flavor becoming deeper as it ages. But the crumb starts to fall apart. And it molds easily.

A bit of history. I have damage to my right wrist so kneading dough can become difficult for me. So I looked for gadgets. The KitchenAid 600 Professional was highly recommended. Found it on line at a real store for more than half off. Before Christmas sale. Gave myself an awesome Christmas gift. Making bread with this is a dream. Then a few years later I was at an auction. There was a Cuisinart DCL-20011 stainless steal food processor. Still in it's box. The lid had been opened but nothing was ever taken out. The tape was still on the CD. I thought there was no way I'd be able to bid on and win this $330 piece of kitchen equipment. Boy was I wrong. I took it home for the grand total of $18.00. For all you math geeks that a bit under 94.5% off.  :) Between the two the food processor takes less time. But is harder to control and actually see what's going on. Still they both make great bread. But if your perfectly healthy and willing you really don't need either piece of equipment. This naturally leads to the topic of bread machines. The wife and I had one. Used it a few times. If it's what you got and you like it. Go for it. If your looking to make bread and you don't have one. Good.

I have a favorite bread. This bread takes six rising times. The over all flavor of this white bread is dark and very rich. I have others that I like. But this is my favorite. With each new recipe I try I get a new flavor and texture. I tend to stay away from breads that will have an open airy texture. They are really only good for eating by the slice. Tend to not slice thin well and really sloppy for sandwiches.  What i look for in a home made loaf is something that will hold it's shape in the bottom of a soup or stew bowl. And stay together when eaten as a sandwich.

Books. Is it worth getting a bread only book? Nope. Those recipes are no better than the ones you'll find in a catch all book like "Fanny Farmers", "Good Housekeeping" or "The Joy of cooking". And plenty of recipes at places like "". For learning you can find more than you'll ever need on Youtube.  Now there are exceptions. I have a bread book for the gadget geek. Each recipe is written for the by hand, by stand mixer and by food processor. There is major differences in how the ingredients have to be handled. I'd recommend that book,
"Bernard Clayton's new complete book of Breads. Revised and Expanded." If your really getting into the artisan breads then getting a few good books would be worth it. 'Flour water salt yeast", "The Bread Bakers Apprentice" and the like. 

and speaking of books.
I've heard about this. Even watched some demos on Youtube. Bread you don't have to knead. You make the dough, stick it in the fridge and use when you want it. And to make it even more tantalizingly easy you don't even need bread flour. Good ol 'all purpose is all you need. So I bought into it. Yep I bought a book. And today I tried it. Made a single batch. Divided it in half. One half is now sleeping in the fridge. The other? After no needing and only one rather long rising time and a shorter time in the pan. All following directions. Went right into a very hot oven with steam. Nothing elaborate. Just a metal pan with water in it. I ended up with one very nice looking but as flavorless as store bought loaf of bread. The crust, thanks to the steam, is thick and crackly. But without any flavor. Of all the bread that I have ever made this is the biggest disappointment. However, to give the devil his due, the book does say the longer the dough sits in the icebox the better the flavor. All the way up to a 'sort of' sour dough. Which makes sense. I do have dough rotting in my fridge.  So here's the actual purpose for this thread. I'm going to make the second half of this batch in a few days. I'm also going to make a second batch, divide that one in half. Keep both halves in the fridge even longer. Make each loaf and compare them for both flavor and texture. See if all this hype is actually true. Then type in my opinions.

I'm not giving up on the tried and true. it's made wonderful and diverse breads for a few thousand years now.

So for my review of icebox bread.
Day one.
Baking the dough the same day you make it is a waste of time. Completely flavorless.

cause the rat:
So this is where it's all at right now. Just got home from work and decided to make the second loaf. According to the directions it has to warm up for an hour and a half before I put it in the oven. Then it cooks for 45 minutes. I'll let it cool a bit and give it a taste. If this bread still have no flavor I'm not going to bother making more batches.  I still have some of the first loaf so I'll get a great side by side comparison. If however the second loaf has flavor I'll make a full batch tomorrow. That'll be enough for two more loaves of bread. Let it fridge for three days and make one loaf. Leaving the remaining dough in for a few days more. The book says this can stay in the fridge for up to 14 days. But by then there could be lots of problems. I don't plan on turning yeasted flour into hairy cheese in my fridge any time soon.  :)

cause the rat:
My review, loaf number two.
I've never had bread that smelt like over cooked popcorn before. Very slight flavor. I didn't steam this loaf. Still has a nice crust. Just no flavor.

Looks like this is going to be a short lived experiment. Bread isn't just a collection of ingredients. It's how it's handled. This idea is appealing. Because it takes less time and work than traditional bread. Take a hunk of dough out of the fridge. Stick it in the oven and have fresh bread every day. Not jut fresh bread. Bread resembling loaves that came right out of an old European oven. This would be great for kids. Impressive for get togethers and the holidays. The book is titled "5 minutes a day". Ninety minutes to let it warm up. Then forty five minutes to cook is hardly five minutes a day. Not sure where they come up with that number.  In the end it looks good. It's easy to do. It's convenient and a bit of fun. And it does resemble home made bread.

The book is full of other bread recipes. Even starters for making sour dough and the like. This is their 'Master' recipe. The one all the others are based off of. Perhaps the extra work it takes to make the other breads will result in flavorful loaves. May go back and try a few in the future. For now it's back to the tried and true. With kitchen gadgets.  :)

cause the rat:
So, OK I'm still posting here because let's face it. I'm really bummed out about this fridge bread thing. I don't really want to discourage any of you from trying it. It is still fun. it is still better than not making anything. And because it's home made you'll enjoy it more than store bought. And it's still better than buying a one trick pony called a bread machine.

For those interested in home made bread I'd like to leave a link. "The Bread Channel"

There hasn't been anything new for over two years. But what a wealth of information.

cause the rat:
Decided today to open a cook book I've had for more than 30 years. "From Julia Child's Kitchen". Wanted to see if there was a real version of the French baguette. Ever one I've seen on you tube is different. Not really a fan of this bread. Great curst and flavor. Awesome to eat with a meal. But full of large holes inside. Not that good for sandwiches.The book has a very limited,  22 pages out of almost 700. Only six recipes, section on bread. To my surprise there is a sandwich bread recipe. And I've learned something new by reading it. Most bread recipes call for the dough to rase two times. I can refrigerate the dough derring or after each rise. And freeze it after each rise. Never knew that. I've also learned something else. I didn't need to spend $$ on a few bread pans with their own lids. I could have made flat top bread like smarter people than me have done for a long time now. Put a flat pan on top of the bread pans and weigh it down.  :)


[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version