Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Homemade Bread

Bread is a delicious thing to make yourself that also saves on packaging that will potentially go in the trash. I make bread about once a week. My batch is pretty large and makes 5 loaves. It tastes delicious and we love it for eating fresh, toast, french toast and more but for the most part our family doesn't prefer it for sandwiches. So I went searching and found a different recipe to try out for sandwich bread. I used this one and we liked it pretty well. Many of us were good with it for sandwiches but not everybody yet (with two of the holdouts being people that take the most sandwiches to work). So I guess I am still looking. Does anybody have any great suggestions?
Here is my bread recipe:

Whole Wheat Bread

3 Tablespoons active dry yeast
5 1/4 cups warm water or I often substitute quite a lot of warm pureed squash instead.
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup oil or butter or I often use melted beef tallow
1 Tablespoon salt
Around 15-17 cups of whole wheat flour (it is fine to use some or all white flour instead)

Combine 4 cups flour, the yeast, honey and warm (blood warm) water. Stir well. Sometimes I let this sit and react for around 15 minutes but sometimes I am in a hurry and I don't. Then stir in the salt and oil and as much flour as you can. Then need in enough flour to have a nice smooth and not to sticky but not to hard lump of dough. Cover and let rise until double.

 When the dough has risen punch it down and then divide your dough into 5ths (or if you would like bigger loafs you can do 4) or you could deep fry some of it in oil to make fry bread. Shape your lumps into nice loaves and place them in greased bread pans. Cover and let rise again until they are looking like they are filling up the pans.

Preheat over to 375 degrees and then bake them around 40 minutes or until nicely browned and sounding hollow.

 We love to eat it warm but it does squish up and get misshaped when you slice it while warm. That is okay - it still tastes wonderful! We do also store some for later.

As far as packaging goes.....
When we do buy bread from the store (for sandwiches) we do save the bags and wash them over and over again and then use those bags for our homemade bread. I wouldn't mind finding a nice bread shaped (or even the size for two loaves) container to keep them in but that hasn't happened yet. So we are using what is eventually disposable wrapping but we re-use for a long time so at least it is a fair amount less that is going to the land fill. Not a perfect "zero waste" but a less waste way to do things.

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