frances in the city

a somewhat spiritual connection between self and a loaf of bread
October 26, 2009, 8:05 am
Filed under: Chicago!, kitchen mischief

I successfully baked a loaf of bread for the first time yesterday. I actually attempted last weekend, but decided not to mention it until I had conquered the fickle nature of yeast.

ta daaa

ta daaa

Oatmeal Bread

(from the More with Less cookbook)

Makes 2 loaves
Bake at 350 F
30-40 minutes

Combine in a large bowl:
1 c. quick oats
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 T salt
2 T butter/margarine

Pour over:
2 c. boiling water

Stir in to combine.

1 pkg dry yeast (or 1 T) in
1/2 c. warm water

When batter is cooled to lukewarm, add yeast.

Stir in:
5 c. white flour

When dough is stiff enough to handle, turn onto floured board and knead 5-10 minutes. Place in greased bowl, cover and let rise until doubled. Punch down and let rise again. Shape into 2 loaves and place in greased 9x5x3 pans. Bake at 350 F for 30-40 minutes. Cool on rack, brushing loaves with margarine for a soft crust.

I attribute my success to my mother, whom I talked to throughout the entire yeast-ing process. When I made bread last weekend, the yeast threw a temper tantrum and its sulking resulted in a very dense loaf of bread. This little baby rose right up. Then I punched it down (very satisfying) and it rose back up and then I baked it and there you have it.

I’ve never made bread by myself before. I always watched my mom effortlessly make multiple loaves of such good bread when I was younger, so this was a new venture. Even though I frequently microwave my dinner, I really like making things completely from scratch. It’s weird to describe, but there’s a very nice connection between you and the food you called into being. The ingredients by themselves don’t really count as food, but you get to step in and mix things up and activate the yeast and punch the dough. It’s so much more fulfilling than buying some from the store.

quick weekend recap:

  • On Saturday, Nate had his aforementioned Disney movie night. He tracked down the DVDs at Blockbuster, and we watched Aladdin, Mulan, and The Little Mermaid. Great success. We also went on possibly the most absurdly complicated burrito-run of my 19 year existence. It involved nighttime downtown driving, negligent/absentminded navigation on my part, three different Chipotle locations, soo many one-way streets, zero available parking spots in the entire River North area, an eventual abandonment of vehicle to walk to Chipotle, and the best burrito I’ve ever eaten in my entire life. We learned our lesson, but it was worth it, and I’d do it all again. Chipotle+Adventure=Excellence
  • I joined my church Sunday morning! I went through the process to become a “Covenant Partner” at MissioDei, and I really appreciated learning more about my church’s doctrinal beliefs and intentions as a community. I’m so thankful for what God is doing in and through the church, and I’m grateful to officially be part of it.
  • On Sunday afternoon I had a bit of homework to take care of, but wasn’t feeling creatively-motivated. So instead, I made a loaf of bread, a pan of shortbread, tidied my room and closet, and prepared to make this for dinner tonight. I’m soaking beans, you guys! So exciting!

Did you have any cooking adventures this weekend? Please share! Please share!


1 Comment so far
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Yeah, me and yeast have an ongoing fight … and he always wins…

Comment by Kacie

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