Sourdough Flatbread

I’ve been sharing all the sourdough lately. I split up my starter and gave some to three very dear coworkers and friends. It’s so easy to do – they don’t even have to wait for their own starter to ferment and funk-ify.

There was so much sourdough talk that I felt the need to make something. This flatbread was a great choice. It was simple ingredients, easy to put together, and fairly low-maintenance.I’m just excited for you all to eat. Go! Make this and eat! Use it for curry! Use it for sandwiches! Use it for dips! Eat and be sour! (And merry!)

I originally found the recipe for these flatbreads here, but the ironic thing is that about 1 week after I found this recipe, I ended up buying the sourdough cookbook it was originally in. Highly recommend, by the way!

Ingredients

Yield: 8 flatbreads

2½ c. flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. baking powder
½ c. sourdough starter (I used discard starter)
¼ c. Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
¼ c. neutral oil (I used Canola)
1-2 tbsp. water
Butter or oil, to finish

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Add in the sourdough starter, yogurt or sour cream, oil, and 1 tbsp. water.Mix with your hands or a wooden spoon until a shaggy dough forms. If the dough needs more moisture, add the additional tablespoon of water.Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour in a warm spot.Divide rested dough into 8 equal pieces, and roll out to approximately 8 inches diameter with a rolling pin.Warm a cast-iron skillet, griddle, or large frying pan over medium-low heat. (The original recipe used melted butter here – I used more oil).When the pan is hot, drizzle a bit of oil in the pan, and fry the flatbread for 2-3 minutes a side, one at a time. The flatbread is ready to flip when you can see bubbles forming. Drizzle with a bit more oil, or brush with butter, and flip. Repeat until all flatbread is cooked.Keep warm with a kitchen towel. Serve warm. Use for sandwiches, dips, curries, anything you want!

French Bread

Okay. We all know how much I love bread. So very much!!!! I made this and then forgot to take pictures of it… Twice. So there are still no pictures. Shame on me! Either way, here is a recipe for French bread. This was so easy to make, and there is a lot of hands-off time in the recipe, because it has to rise. The next time I make this, I will be SURE to get pictures!

I made this to make into a cheesy garlic pull-apart bread, and it tasted amazing. I took it to a staff party, and the whole loaf was gone in 20 minutes! People loved the garlic cheesy-ness of the bread, but they were also a little flabbergasted that I made the bread myself. Those who know about my blog said “Of course I made the bread myself”, and weren’t surprised.

I found the original recipe here, and it is SO easy and SO rewarding. I think this will be a new regular loaf of bread in my house, especially when we have pasta!

Ingredients

Yield: 2 loaves of bread

2¼ c. warm water
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. active dry yeast
¾ tbsp. salt
2 tbsp. oil (olive, canola, etc.)
5½ – 6 c. flour

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the water, sugar, and yeast. Let sit for 3-5 minutes to activate the yeast, until it is bubbling and foamy.

Add the salt, oil, and 3 cups of flour. Mix, adding in the extra flour a little at a time, until you get a dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl into a ball that is soft, yet leaves very little dough residue on your fingers. Knead for 2-3 minutes until the dough is soft and smooth.

Lightly grease or oil a bowl (I just take the dough out of my mixer bowl and oil that) and turn the dough to coat, then cover with a layer of greased plastic wrap and let sit in a warm spot in your kitchen to rise until doubled, about 1 hour or so.

Turn out the dough onto a lightly greased surface and divide in half. Pat each section into a thick rectangle (about 9×13). Roll the dough up starting from the long edge, pressing out air bubbles, and pinch the edge to seal. Arrange seam side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

To avoid the risk of your bread deflating, slash gashes in the top of your loaves now. (I don’t have a baker’s lame, so I do it now. If you have a baker’s lame, wait to cut the bread.)

Cover formed loaves with greased plastic wrap, and let the loaves rise until noticably puffy, and almost doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Slash the loaves (if you haven’t already), and place in the center rack of the oven. To get a super crispy crust, you can throw a few ice cubes on the bottom of your oven (but look at manufacturer’s recommendations first!) or spritz the loaves with water before closing the oven door. Personally, I just spray down the loaves with water, because I’m renting a house and don’t want to buy a new oven just in case!

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden and baked through. Remove from oven and let cool before slicing or turning into cheesy garlic pull-apart bread! (Which might just be my next post!!)

Easy Artisan Rolls

Okay, it’s been a busy few weeks. Not going to lie, most of these posts that have been released at the end of August or at the beginning of September were made in the middle of summer, at the end of July.

I was able to catch up with my baking and do a lot of it over the summer, most often in the mornings when it wasn’t ripping hot the whole day. I wrote up the posts, took pictures, and then scheduled them for later.

It’s something I have to do because when I get busy, life is BUSY. By the time this recipe will have went public, I’ll be back in school, when in reality I typed it when I was still relaxing at the beginning of August.

Either way, to the rolls. I couldn’t believe it when I saw the recipe. Crusty outside, soft inside, really good basic bread rolls that have only FOUR ingredients, and take maybe 20 minutes hands on all together? Yes, please!

I found the original recipe here, and was extremely pleased by the results. Next time I need rolls for a gathering, I’m going to whip these up! It really couldn’t be any easier. Mix the four ingredients in a bowl, cover it up, go to sleep, then shape and bake in the morning. Seriously. These rolls are that easy. (Also, the author has some great tips on making these rolls ahead, if you need them!)

Next time I make them, I’m going to experiment with some flavour add-ins, like rosemary, sea salt, or maybe even cheese or garlic. The options are endless!

Ingredients

Yield: 12-16 rolls, depending on size

4 c. flour
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. active dry yeast
2 c. room temperature tap water

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and yeast. Make a well in the center, and add in the water, incorporating everything together until a wet and sticky dough is formed. Cover with plastic wrap, and leave out at room temperature overnight, or 8-12 hours.

After the first rise, preheat oven for 425°F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Generously sprinkle your work surface with flour, then turn out the dough onto the flour. Cut into equal pieces, about 12-16 (depending on how big you want your rolls), and shape into balls, making sure rolls are coated in the flour, and pinching the edges together to seal.

If you want smooth looking rolls, place seam side down on the prepared baking sheets. If you want a more rustic texture, place rolls seam side up. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise 20-40 minutes, until almost doubled.

Transfer pans to the preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes, then rotate pan(s) and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until rolls are an even golden brown. Transfer rolls to a wire rack to cool completely.

Southern Peach Bread

This peach bread is so good! It’s extremely easy to make, and takes about 10 minutes to whip up. Also, it only takes one bowl to make everything. How easy is that! Paul loves peaches, so when I told him that I was making a peach bread, he was extremely excited.

I found the recipe here, from Pinterest, and I am so happy with the results. Little effort, big rewards. Delicious! The only thing I changed was that I left out the pecans because I didn’t have any and I didn’t want to go to the store. I left those in the original recipe though.

I don’t want to spend much time talking about this recipe, because it’s too good! I’m going to go eat another piece.

Ingredients

Yield: 1 loaf

½ c. vegetable oil
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 c. finely dices peaches or peach puree
½ c. sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
1½ c. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
½ c. pecans, finely chopped (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom of a loaf pan and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, and sugar. Add in the eggs, peaches, sour cream, and vanilla, and whisk again.

Add in the flour, baking soda, and salt a little at a time. If using, fold in the pecans.

Pour batter into the greased pan, and bake in preheated oven for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean.

Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan, let cool 5-10 minutes longer, slice and serve.

Brioche Bread

Time for another foray back into the world of bread-baking!

Brioche is a classic French bread. Its main components are eggs and butter, and boy, is it rich. This baby has a whopping total of 9 eggs (including the egg wash egg), and a full cup of butter in the batter. It is not for the faint of heart.

I’ve been looking up recipes for Brioche for years. I’ve dabbled in the “Easy” the “Beginner’s” and “So-Good-It’s-Almost-Brioche” recipes. They’ve never been the winner for me.

This recipe has it all – I loved how easy it was to follow along. A lot of brioche recipes sounded quite confusing, or needed a ton of time, or just seemed too finicky. I mean, this recipe does take quite a bit of time. All of the prep time, the rising time, and the baking and cooling time adds up to quite a chunk of your day. I was always turned off by the amount of eggs that the dough uses.

But, I don’t know what happened. I was surfing around Pinterest last night, looking for a recipe, and BANG. This brioche recipe dropped into my lap. The picture pulled me in, and I read through Marta Antonia Rivera’s blog Sense and Edibility to find this recipe. 

Suddenly, brioche didn’t seem so daunting. And I had a sudden urge that YES, I want to make brioche.

So here we are.

Not going to lie, the recipe calls for bread flour, and I only have all purpose. I know, I know, bad baker, but we buy HUGE bags of all-purpose flour from Costco, so I can never quite justify going out and buying more flour than we already have. I bake a lot, okay?

Either way, I do not have the beautiful step-by-step pictures as the original recipe did, so if you want, head over to the site linked above and check out the step-by-step, and hopefully, brioche becomes easier to tackle because of today’s recipe!

I wish you could smell this bread through your computer screen. It is absolutely divine, and so soft! Trust me, go make this. It is completely worth the effort!

Ingredients

Yield: 2 loaves of bread

For the sponge:

¼ c. honey
2 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. active dry yeast
1 c. milk, warmed to 110°F
1 c. flour

For the dough:

½ c. sugar
4 tsp. salt
8 eggs (large)
5¾ c. flour
1 c. butter, cut into tablespoons

For the egg wash:

1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp. water

To make the sponge, pour the milk into a large mixing bowl. Add the honey and yeast to the milk and allow the yeast to bloom for 5 minutes. If the yeast does not get bubbly and foamy, it is dead. Open a fresh pack of yeast, and try everything again.

Whisk the flour into the yeast mixture. The sponge should look like a thick cake batter.

Cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel. Leave in a warm, draft-free spot (like the oven with the light turned on) to rise until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.

To continue making the dough, transfer the sponge to the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix in the eggs, sugar, and salt. After incorporating, the mixture should look like a smooth, thick batter.

Slowly add the remaining flour into the dough. If it gets too hard to incorporate with the paddle attachment, switch to the dough hook.

Once the flour is incorporated, add in the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time. Add the next 2 tablespoons only when the previous 2 are completely incorporated into the batter, and save the wrapper from your butter.

Once all of the butter has been incorporated into the dough, it should be soft, smooth, and pliable. Remove the dough from the bowl, and grease the bowl with the leftover butter on the wrappers. Discard the wrappers.

Return the dough to the bowl and turn to coat in the butter lining the bowl.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel, and allow to rise again in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Once the dough has finished rising, punch the dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured countertop. Divide in half.

Preheat oven to 375°F, and lightly grease two loaf pans.

Form the two halves of dough into logs roughly the same length as your loaf pans, and place them in the greased pans. Whisk together the egg and water of the egg wash and brush the loaves with the egg wash to prevent drying.

Place the pans in a warm, draft-free spot and allow to rise until the dough is about 1 inch away from the top of the pan. This should take 30 minutes to an hour.

Brush loaves again with egg wash, and if desired, cut the tops of the loaves into a decorative pattern.

Bake loaves in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

Remove pans from the oven, and allow bread to cool in pans for 10 minutes.

Remove bread from pans, and allow to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing and serving.