Good News and Classic Sandwich BreadMay 15, 2008 at 5:44 pm | Posted in savory things, yeast breads | 23 Comments
I woke up this morning to some good news: my Rhubarb-Filled Yogurt Cupcakes won Cupcake Hero’s Earth Day event! I’m so excited, and not to brag (hahaha), but it’s actually my second CH win! Thanks so much to Laurie, Tempered Woman, Joy and Leigh, who collect, bake and round-up the CH entries each month. That takes not only heaps of ingredients, but lots of time, effort and witty paraphrasing skills as well. Definitely check out the round-up to see all the Earth loving cupcakes they received last month.
Now, onto the bread. I have some bread baking experience, but it’s pretty limited. I’ve made zillions of batches of brioche, bagels and English muffins through my various jobs, and I make my own pizza dough all the time at home, but I never bake my own baguettes or dinner rolls, and I rarely even make a simple loaf bread.
What brought this on then? Laziness may sound like a weird reason to bake your own bread, but that’s what it was, pure and simple. I was too lazy to walk the 25 minutes down to the grocery store (I don’t drive). R has been in Malaysia on business the last couple days. If I were in New York and R was away, I’d likely use that freedom to go and get bombed with my single friends if it weren’t a work night (you can keep that on the down-low), or at least order some yummy delivery if it were. Since I don’t know too many people in Sydney to go boozing with, and there aren’t really any delivery options where I live, it was a tuna sandwich and the company of Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style for me last night. I can’t manage a whole can of tuna myself, so I still had half my salad to eat for lunch today. But…you guessed it…no bread.
Being lazy today, I’m lucky that making this type of bread is so freakin’ easy. I had originally wanted to use a recipe from Rose Levy Beranbaum, but it required making a sponge starter and then it needed three rises for the dough. While it would have had great flavor, it also wouldn’t have been ready by lunch-time, and that was the whole reason for getting the yeast out! Then I remembered a recipe that I’d torn off a bag of King Arthur flour a couple years ago. It only takes about two hours of total rising time, and if you use a stand mixer, measuring out the ingredients is really the only work there is. It’s baked in a loaf pan, so there isn’t even any tricky shaping to do. And I don’t know if it was because the bread was so fresh and soft, or if it was because I was so antsy after waiting for it to cool down, but that was one tasty tuna sandwich!
In true lazy fashion, I’ll just show you the way to King Arthur’s recipe, rather than type it myself. I made mine in my stand mixer, using the dough hook. I know that King Arthur’s AP flour has a higher protein content than most. Since I can’t kind KA flour in this neck of the woods and I have no clue as to the protein content of the flour I buy here, I substituted 1/4 cup of the AP flour in the recipe with bread flour. I substituted another 1/4 cup with whole wheat flour, just for fun. Be sure take your baked bread out of the loaf pan and cool it on a rack for about an hour before slicing into it. This rest period helps set the bread’s texture and crust.