In The Kitchen

Dearest Readers: I have not been in the mood to blog lately! I have many a topic on which to blog, but I am, without a doubt, in hibernating mode. However, an amazing bread recipe has roused me from my slumber and I feel compelled to share the discovery with you.

A friend shared a pizza dough recipe on her blog which first introduced me to the book Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois. I reserved the book from the library. I waited. I waited. I waited. Well, the book came at the right time. I have few distractions at the moment, and the kitchen beckons me often to create.

The book has an amazing array of breads and pastries for the Carb Lover. The aforementioned pizza dough recipe is wonderful and easy. Flipping through the book the Light Whole Wheat Bread recipe caught my eye. I was looking for a simple recipe where I had the ingredients on hand. Voila! Dinner was served with chicken soup, a salad of lettuce, cranberries, sunflowers and mozerella cheese, and this amazing bread adorned with a touch of honey. At dinner my husband told our children that he didn't like to eat bread until he met me. After all these years I had forgotten that tidbit! I love that complement.

Light Whole Wheat Bread

Makes four 1-pound loaves. The recipe is easily doubled or halved.

3 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 cup whole wheat flour
Whole what flour for the pizza peel

1. Mixing and storing the dough: Mix the yeast and salt with the water in a 5-quart bowl, or  lidded (not airtight) food container.

2. Mix in the remaining dry ingreients without kneeding, using a spoon, a 14-cup capacity food processor with dough attachment), or a heavyduty stand mixer (with dough hook). If you'r not using a machine, you may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour.

3. Cover (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature until the dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approximately 2 hours.

4. The dough can be used immediately after the initial rise, though it is easier to handle when cold. Refrigerate in a lidded (not airtight) container and use over the next 14 days.

5. On baking day, dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1-pound (grapefruit-size) piece. Dust the piece with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sids, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go. Allow to rest and rise on a cornmeal-sovered pizza peel for 40 minutes.

6. Twenty-minutes before bakign time, preheat th overn to 450 degress F, with a baking stone placed on the jmiddle rack. Place an empty broiler tray on any other shelf that won't interfere with the rising bread.

7. Sprinkle the loaf liberally with flour and slash a cros, "scallop," or tic-tac-tow pattern into the top, using a serrated bread knife. Leave the flour in place for baking; tap some of it off before eating.

8. Slide the loaf directly onto the hot stone. Pour 1 cup of hot tap water into the broiler tray, and quickly close the oven door. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until deeply browned and firm. Smaller or larger loaves will requir adjustments in baking time.

9. Allow to cool before slicing or eating.

Two other recipes I baked over the holidays that I highly recommend are an Apple Spice Cake on Martha Stewart's website but sent in by one of her viewers, and a Sweet Nest Berry Pie recommended to me by a friend and superbly delicious...just ask my 3-year-old little boy.


Susanna said…
So glad you liked the book! You should try the Challah...amazing! I have it in mind to try the pastries and the boules although my waistline wants me to be cautious.