Nichole’s Slices of Life–Making Bread

7 07 2011

I’ve been fascinated with breadmaking since I was a newlywed.  I spent a great deal of time learning to make different kinds of quick breads the first years of my marriage.  However, I was always afraid of yeast breads.  I tried making a loaf of yeast bread the first summer of  my marriage.  It turned out to be quite rock like.

I didn’t attempt yeast bread again until the summer of 2004.  Poor me,  I still didn’t understand yeast and how it works.  But , I didn’t give up.  I finally learned that the yeast has to bubble up  and become rather frothy before it is effective.  Always before–I had water that was too hot or not enough sugar for the yeast to activate.  Also, I learned that if I can’t smell that sweet smell of yeast activating–I might as well throw it down the drain.

At last, I am a very confident  maker of yeast breads.  I only use luke warm water to activate my yeast.  I place one tablespoon of yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar to about 3/4 cup of luke warm water for one loaf of bread. In making multiple loaves of bread–I used to place all the amounts in one large bowl.  Lately, I’ve preferred to fix a cup of frothy yeast for each loaf of bread.

I got in this new habit when I started making communion bread for our parish.The reason that I do this is because the exactness is so important for bread that is to become the “body of Christ”.   I make the bread just like regular white bread but I save a part to roll out for our special seal of  “the lamb of Christ”.  Then I attach this rolled out dough with the seal having been pressed into it–back on to my loaf of bread.  It is silly just to make one loaf–so I usually make two communion loaves at a time.  Round loaves are also the acceptable shape for the bread.

Lately, I’ve gotten so I make round loaves for our family, too.  I bake them in my cake pans that I bought the first summer I was married. Those pans have a great deal of sentimental treasure to me –as they were used to bake more birthday cakes than I can count.   I love my white bread made with unbleached white flour.  It is wonderful with Tuna salad.  In fact, we had our tuna salad with my white bread for our lunch today.  Oh, sure I make whole wheat bread , too.  But things like chicken or tuna salad taste best to me on homemade white bread.

Here is a picture of today’s fresh batch.  God bless each of you!

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