Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Quiet Country Kitchen...

As I write this, bread is baking in the oven. Why am I always so intimidated by baking bread? I have been making bread for my family for years, sometimes not purchasing store bought bread for weeks at a time, and yet I always feel like I am undertaking something really big when I think about beginning the process.

The ridiculous thing about that is that from the moment I say to myself, "I am going to make some bread" to the moment I place the loaves in the sunniest spot on the counter to rise, is about 15 minutes. It's not really such a big deal after all, and it is so much more satisfactory to eat these loaves made right here at home, of simple, wholesome ingredients.

I use my Kitchen Aid mixer rather than kneading by hand, but have not yet succumbed to the lure of the bread machine. Aside from the expense, I'm not sure where I would store a bread machine in my small kitchen, with its limited counter space. Usually I make the English Muffin Bread recipe from the recipe book that came with my Kitchen Aid mixer when Limerick gifted it to me 12 or 13 years ago. I'm still looking for a milk-free recipe that is as fool-proof as this recipe, and that my family loves as wholeheartedly as they do this one.



photo 1 by Haiku, photo 2 by Aisling

7 comments:

karlanee said...

I'm the same way with bread machines. I enjoy bread baking but couldn't imagine where I'd put a machine. It would be convenient but somehow takes the magic out of bread backing.

But I'd never go back to my pre-KitchenAid days!

The bread looks great. I bet it tastes great with butter and honey!

Aisling said...

This bread is so good toasted (like English Muffins) and really yummy as French Toast. And, yes, really yummy with bread and honey. My boys like that as a bedtime treat.

Thanks for commenting!

Nan said...

Aisling, I never put milk in my bread. Just water, honey, olive oil or butter, salt, flour, and sometimes cooked rice or potatoes. I think you can just leave it out of your recipe and it will be fine.

Aisling said...

Nan,

I'd love to try your recipe. This particular one doesn't seem to work right with substitutions. I tried non-fat milk, and the consistency of the bread was not the same. I can't remember if I've ever tried just water instead of the same quantity of milk. Maybe sometime you'll post your favorite basic bread recipe on your blog? I'd love that!

Patty said...

Your bread looks lovely !
Bread machines seem to rob a person of that space in time where you are working at something, yet have time to think.

Linda said...

how delightful --- what a beautiful loaf!

Aisling said...

Linda, Thank you for saying so! My daughter took such a nice photo of the loaves for me; it really shows them off. Homemade bread is such a simple thing, but very satisfying! Thanks for visiting my blog!