August 21, 2009

Variety Bread

~~I'm joining Jen today for her Tasty Tuesday with this recipe. Come on over and see some delicious recipes!

I thought I'd share my favorite bread recipe today. You know I love versatility, and this one does not disappoint! It freezes beautifully, too!

Basic Bread Recipe

4 ½ cups very warm water

1 1/3 cups white sugar

1/3 cup yeast

1 ¼ cup vegetable oil

2 Tbs. salt

12 cups white flour (or wheat, or a mixture of white/wheat)

In large mixing bowl blend first five ingredients. Add flour slowly. Continue to knead (in mixer) in flour until dough becomes no longer sticky. (Although, you don’t want it too dense)

Cover counter and hands with flour. Form breads as desired. (The fun part)

Let rise in a very warm place, until tripled in size. Gently place in 350 oven for 15-30 minutes (depending on size of loaf). Tap on top of bread. If it sounds hollow, it is done. It should be golden brown in color.

This will create 5-6 nice size loaves.

Gourmet Bread Varieties:

Sweet Cinnamon Swirl

Flatten an 8th of the dough into a ½ inch thick rectangle. Sprinkle ¼ cup cinnamon and ¼ cup sugar over the dough, one inch from edges. Roll up starting from the long end. Pinch together and tuck ends under. Let rise until tripled in size. Butter top, add cinnamon/sugar. Bake for 20 min. @ 350 and enjoy.

Cinnamon Rolls: Make as directed above, slicing log into rolls before allowing to rise. Place in a round cake pan and bake for 15 min.

Pesto Swirl

Follow directions for cinnamon swirl above, substituting your favorite pesto. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil in the bottom of the bread pan before allowing it to rise. Brush top with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

Herb Loaf

Add favorite herbs, such as rosemary, basil, oregano to an 8th of the dough. Shape into a loaf. Let rise until tripled in size. Drizzle with ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil. Bake @ 350 for 20 min.

Gourmet Bread Additives:

~Diced apples


~Calzone: pizza sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni roll

This is a great recipe for the kids to get involved in. Since it makes so much dough, they can each make their own loaf and there is still plenty for mom to be creative with!


Bugs and Sunshine said...

Yum-O! There is nothing better than the smell of bread filling the house.

Carpoolqueen said...

Is this the one you sent me? I still have the email saved for the next time the inspiration fairy hits me.

Samantha said...

Look so Yummy! It relly does make alot. company coming? because you could feed a small army. ;)

Anonymous said...

Those look yummy, Gretchen! I'm going to have to try that!

sonya said...

I have to admit I'm a chronic lurker! I've been to your site a few times via links on other blogs. I love it! I often don't comment because I feel I don't have anything new to add. I wonder if people really want another, "beautiful, great idea, or awesome" in their comments. Well, I read your post from awhile back on comparison and blogging and I feel bad that I rarely comment. I encourage you to keep blogging, keep reading blogs, and don't even look at the number of comments anyone gets! Even though it's a public venue, remember that your "performance" is just between you and the Lord! Thanks for your lovely blog and your reminders that his mercies really every morning!

Melissa @ Breath of Life said...

This does look yummy. I'll have to give it a try.

Lori said...

I just came across your blog. Lucky me! I am so excited to try this bread recipe. Cinnamon rolls are my son's favorite food. I can't wait to try and make him some homemade ones.

Kellie said...

MMmm...I love bread.

These look amazing. Can't wait to try!

Saver Mom said...

I am scared to death of yeast. I don't know why! I feel like so many things can go wrong. But your post has made me think I should give it a try and that it just might work!

natANDpina said...

i love it.
will def. try it out !

natANDpina said...

i love it.
will def. try it out !

darnold23 said...

I just love bread, but I don't bake it like to used to. Thanks for the great ideas. I would love to invite you to join me for Crock Pot Wednesday at Please come check it out. Thanks so much for posting.