"[Breadmaking is] one of those almost hypnotic businesses, like a dance from some ancient ceremony. It leaves you filled with one of the world's sweetest smells... there is no chiropractic treatment, no Yoga exercise, no hour of meditation in a music-throbbing chapel. that will leave you emptier of bad thoughts than this homely ceremony of making bread.” M.K. Fisher The Art of Eating
“Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts.” James Beard
“What must you break apart in order to bring a family close together? Bread, of course.”
Jodi Picoult, The Storyteller
“Bread is the king of the table and all else is merely the court that surrounds the king. The countries are the soup, the meat, the vegetables, the salad, but bread is king.” – Louis Bromfield, American novelist (1896-1956)
I love to cook and I'm pretty sure that bread is my favorite thing to make. Maybe it's the memories of the homemade bread that my grandma and mama used to make, and that I've yet to duplicate exactly. Maybe it's the unbeatably mouthwatering smell of the bread baking in the oven. Maybe it's the hard to beat taste of a slice of good homemade bread, warm from the oven and smeared with butter.
Truthfully, the hubs has to count his carbs for his health's sake, and I am trying to limit my carbs for my weight's sake, so I've only been making bread for holidays, company dinners and other special occasions. My oldest granddaughter is on spring break and she spent the day with me while her mama was out of town on business. I think that's a good enough special occasion to make her favorite meal with her help- spaghetti, salad, fresh green beans cooked with bacon and onion, and homemade french bread.
I have my go-to dough recipe for regular bread, dinner rolls and sweet rolls, but for french bread I use this recipe from Dreamy Whites. The ingredients are:
2 TBL. Dry Active Yeast
2 TBL. of Sugar
3 Cups of warm water.
1 TBL Sea Salt
4 Cups of Unbleached White Bread Flour
2 Cups of Unbleached Whole Wheat Bread Flour
but, as usual, I have tweaked the recipe and use 3 cups of each type of flour.
Often I find the dough a little too sticky so I add another 1/2 cup of the flour.
Click over to Dreamy Whites for the full recipe and instructions.
If you've never tried baking bread before,
I encourage you to give it a try.
It's so satisfying!