There’s that saying out there that is used to described something great, “This is the greatest thing since sliced bread!” That should be revised a little bit – “This is the greatest thing since warm, sliced homemade bread!”
I made my first batch of homemade bread today (2 loaves) and it was absolutely wonderful! I took basic ingredients (yeast, flour, salt, sugar, & shortening) and made bread out of it. I felt a little bit like Tom Hanks in Cast Away when he was able to make fire. I made BREAD! I feel so empowered LOL.
The entire process was very easy. I admit, I had a little bit of help since we own a Kitchenaid stand mixer with a dough hook. The entire process of mixing everything together and preparing the dough for the oven probably took about 15 minutes total. The majority of the time spent was from letting the dough rise (over an hour total) but you can do other things while the yeast does its thing.
About 30 minutes into cooking, I could smell the bread baking from our living room. I stood up and walked towards the kitchen and the aroma increased. Only 15 or so minutes to go!
The timer went off and I took out the first loaf out of the oven. I was so anxious to put it on a cutting board I came close to burning myself. I sliced a nice, thick slice and the butter I spread on it melted on impact. I took a bite, and I was whisked away to the homemade bread my mom used to make. Sigh.
Our son came running into the kitchen, “I want to see the bread!” I showed it to him and he said he wanted to try it. I gave him a piece and anxiously waited for his reaction.
Not only did I make some homemade bread, our son likes it! He wanted a piece with jelly on it. After he ate that, he wanted a piece with butter on it. It took only a few hours for that first loaf to almost disappear. All of us dug into it. You would have thought it was as great as….well, warm, sliced homemade bread 🙂
I think I always thought that making bread was really hard to do, but the recipe I used proved me otherwise. By running some very crude numbers, the two loaves of bread that we made cost around $2.20 for the ingredients that we used. I checked while in the grocery store today and one of their bakery loaves of white bread cost $1.99. The brand of bread we usually get runs on sale 2/$4.00. We are saving some money and we have control over the bread and what goes in it.
Next up I would like to try to make bread better suited for sandwiches (the bread I made here is a heavier bread), some hamburger/sandwich buns, sub buns and our own pasta. If we keep up with making more things from scratch, we just may make a huge dent in our grocery spending. That is always a good thing!