FTW! Bread!

3 Feb

In my quest to become a domestic goddess I watched “Julie and Julia” yesterday for inspiration.  That is where I heard the phrase, “You are the butter to my bread,” which I absolutely adore.  It inspired me to bake bread, which I had been planning to do for about a week but had been putting off.  Making bread from scratch seemed so intimidating to me; the rising, the resting, the kneading, the waiting… it’s a long process!  Not to mention a bit more complicated than throwing a roast in the oven for two hours and viola, it’s done.

I made French Bread, which is a two-day process unless you start it at 8 a.m.  I started around 3 p.m. so the dough rested in the fridge for closer to the 24 hour maximum rather than the 4 hour minimum.  I started with some flour, water, and yeast, as per the directions, and let it rest an hour.  It didn’t really look bubbly like the recipe said it would, but I continued on.  Add 1 and 2/3 cup flour.  Yeah.  Right.  The dough was not thin, it was really more like dough and adding flour to that was not going to happen.  I got about 3/4 of a cup in before I knew for sure it wasn’t going to work.  I added some more warm water to the dough and the rest of the flour mixed in fairly easily.  This would have been a lot easier with my beautiful KitchenAid mixer, which is sitting in Buffalo.  We have limited resources here for cooking.

Nevertheless, I got the dough mixed and kneading it was tricky.  There were a lot of folds in the dough and I couldn’t get it to be one, solid mass.  So, as is my usual when cooking, I just kept going.  I cut the oval-shaped dough ball in half, shaped the loaves, and left them in the fridge over night.

Today we took Mittens to the vet to get the stitches out from her spaying.  I pulled the loaves out to warm up while we were gone.  When we got home, I finished preparing them as per the recipe and into the oven the went.  They didn’t brown like the recipe said they would, but they sounded sort of hollow when I smacked them with a knife.  I baked them 23 minutes instead of the suggested 18 to 20.  They were so hot!  I wanted so badly to try my work out.

After twenty minutes I couldn’t wait anymore.  I ripped off a chunk and *chomp* *chewchewchew* *pause*  It tasted like real bread!  I had made real bread on my first attempt!

At this point, I am thinking I can conquer the world, or at least the kitchen.  If I can make bread, which I thought to be so intimidating, on the first try, I can do anything!  What’s next?  Boning a duck?  Aspic?  Who knows, we’ll have to see what I get hungry for.

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