Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Loaf of Bread....

Call me crazy; I can take it. I just can't take any more high fructose corn syrup or partially hydrogenated oils. I don't want them in my food or in my house or in my body. They are not welcome here! I'm not going to go into a lot of explanations here, but rest assured that high fructose corn syrup is a cheap sugar substitute that the body doesn't even recognize as a food, and that partially hydrogenated oils are the worst kinds of fat you can ingest. Nuff said.

Yesterday, I stopped by gigantic store-which-shall-remain-nameless in search of some hot dog buns for some Tofurky sausage "hoagies" for dinner last night. I was SO MAD that I could not find any hot dog buns without the offending ingredients! Hamburger buns, yes; hot dog buns, no. Why? As I read the ingredients on the hamburger buns, I was sort of stunned by the long list. I decided that I really didn't want any of that stuff in my home, so I decided to roll my own:-) (Sorry; that just worked so well there, don't you think?)

Now, time was not exactly at a premium, having wasted the entire morning reading labels at gigantic store, among other things. So, I needed something quick. As I pulled into the garage, my headlights illuminated: THE BREAD MACHINE. I got the bread machine as a wedding gift, oh those 17+ years ago, and I used to love it. Somewhere along the way, our love affair staled... maybe when the Kitchen Aid mixer moved in. Then, I became all about shapes and crusts and textures, and the bread machine moved to the garage. But yesterday, I remembered the "Dough" cycle. You know, where the machine mixes and rises for you, then you can pull the dough out and shape it and bake it however you wish!

I found an old recipe that can be used for rolls, changed it, and let 'er rip. The dough was a bit sticky, but I rolled out some little logs, let them rise again, and popped them into the oven. The results were... delicious! They were sturdy little rolls that tasted simple and lovely.

Today, Tuesday, is my crazy-busy day. I planned on a pot of soup for dinner and thought I'd pick up some bread at the store, but the bread machine was still sitting on the counter, so I thought: why not? Juggled a little bit, guessed on the baking time and the bread is ready and waiting for dinner! Here is a picture of today's loaf, and one leftover roll from yesterday:

Here is the recipe, if you still have your bread machine sitting around:

Easy Bread or Rolls

(NOTE: on the first day I used a real egg; on the second day I used Ener-G egg replacer. They both worked fine. I used olive oil, but you could use canola oil or even melted butter/spread. I used soy milk, but I'm sure it would work fine with rice milk or dairy milk.)

1/2 C soy milk
1/2 C water
equivalent of 1 large egg
1 Tbs olive oil
1-1/2 C all purpose flour
1-1/2 C whole wheat flour
1 Tbs. vital wheat gluten
1 tsp salt
1 scant Tbs yeast

Place ingredients into your bread machine and set for the dough cycle.
When it beeps, turn out your dough onto a lightly floured surface.
Form into a large "log" for a large loaf of bread, or, divide into about 8 equal pieces. Roll out into mini logs for hot dog buns, or mini rounds for hamburger buns.
Place shaped loaves onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet, which has been lightly sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover lightly with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let rise again for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375.
Place the baking sheet in the center rack and bake until lightly browned. It will take 15-20 minutes or so for the rolls, depending on size, and about 30 minutes for the large loaf.

That's it for today; tvp recipes coming soon, I promise!!


Anonymous said...

I know -- hot dog buns are the worst! I've had that exact same experience looking for something passable to serve with Boca Brats. Given the dozens of choices at those big supermarkets, I'm surprised there isn't even one "all natural" option. Even the store-made bakery buns are full of crap. Ugh. Next time, I'm calling you up and ordering some homemade buns;-). Actually, we usually just end up eating them chopped up and mixed with veggies, beans, etc., stuffed into tortillas, or, most often, we stick a fork in them and eat them hot out of the skillet.


Anonymous said...

You truely are a domestic goddess!!!!