Adventures in Bread Making

Earlier this year I bought a bread machine. My husband had been grousing about the cost of bread and I have some food allergies, so I decided to give making bread at a home a try. I enjoy cooking and I’m good at making pies, cakes, and quick breads, but a nice loaf of yeast bread had always eluded me in the past and I confess to being impatient and nervous with the whole by-hand knead, rise, knead, and pray it rises again process.

The bread machine experiment turned out to be a success and we’ve probably only bought one loaf of bread from the store since February. It takes very little time to set up the ingredients, I can relax knowing exactly what’s in my bread, and the machine does all the work. (Perfect for getting quickly back to writing!)

Today I made a simple white bread adapted from the Easy as Can Be recipe at the King Arthur Flour website.

I made the small one pound loaf, because the slices fit better in my sandwich container. It takes maybe 10 minutes to measure and ready the ingredients (not counting the time to let the yeast come to room temperature) and my machine takes 3 hours to go from mixing to done.

2/3 cup lukewarm water
1/4 cup lukewarm rice milk
2 tablespoons vegan margarine (also warmed to soften)
2 1/2 cups bread flour
2 teaspoons gluten (can be omitted)
5 teaspoons sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon bread machine yeast

Add the ingredients to your machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Choose the basic white bread setting, and press Start.

It turned out great, nice texture, delicious and yeasty, and I’m sitting here debating whether to be bad and eat another slice. I have some apricot jam . . .

I should have photographed the loaf before it cooled, because the top was pretty and smooth then.

As I try new recipes, I’ll do a post on the results.

Do you have a favorite bread machine recipe?

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