Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Homemade Whole Wheat Bread

If you own a mixer with a dough hook . . . here is a recipe for such an EASY and DELICIOUS bread.  From beginning to end . . . I have homemade bread in about 2 hours!   Not to mention how wonderful my house smells as it is baking.

If you don't have a mixer with a dough hook, you CAN still make this bread.  The only tricky thing about making this without a mixer is the flour.    Because the dough is so moist, you will naturally need to add more flour just to be able to handle it  . . . which may lead to bread that is a little more dry or dense.  If you have a bread machine, that should be able mix this up just fine!  Depending on the size of your machine however, you may have to cut the recipe in half for all of the ingredients to fit.

I grind my own wheat for this recipe,  but store bought whole wheat flour will work as well.   Usually, I use white wheat, but I have used the red wheat and really like that too.   I also cheat a little.  I used to make this bread as stated, but then later decided I didn't want to keep buying the gluten flour.  But without the gluten flour (even with substituting it with whole wheat flour), my bread would taste great, but would not rise as tall as I like.  So . . . sadly I have to admit that currently,  I substitute the wheat flour listed at the end of the recipe for white.  I figure, my kids are still getting a lot of nutrients since more than half the flour used is whole wheat . . . but then my bread still rises tall and tastes wonderful.   See what works best for you.

I make a batch of this bread at least once a week . . .  I have a goal to not buy bread from the store at all this year . . . and so far so good!   My kids love it and will not touch whole wheat bread from the store . . . not to mention that I don't want to pay $3-$5 a loaf.  My kids can go through one loaf in one meal!
Depending on how much you are paying for ingredients, this bread can cost as little as $1 a loaf.

Hope you enjoy!

For 2 (9.25 x 2.75 inch) loaves

5 C. whole wheat flour
1/2 C. gluten flour (can be substituted with whole wheat flour)
2 TBS. instant yeast
3 C. steaming hot tap water (120-130 degrees)
1 1/2 TBS. salt
1/2 C. oil
1/2 C. honey or 3/4 C. sugar
2 TBS. bottled lemon juice (this acts as a dough enhancer)
3 C. whole wheat flour

Mix together first three ingredients in mixer with a dough hook.  Add water all at once and mix for 1 minute; cover and let rest for 10 minutes.  Add salt, oil, honey or sugar and lemon juice and beat for 1 minute.  Add last flour, 1 cup at a time, beating between each cup.  Beat for about 10 minutes until dough pulls away from sides of the bowl.  This makes a VERY soft dough.

Pre-heat oven for 1 minute to lukewarm and turn off.  Turn dough onto oiled countertop; divide, shape into loaves ( I don't spend a lot of time trying to shape them as the dough is usually pretty sticky) and place into greased bread pans.  Let rise in warm oven for 10-15 minutes until dough reaches top of pan.  Do NOT remove bread from oven; turn oven to 350 degrees and bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from pans and cool on racks.

Thank you Janice R. and Emergency Food in a Nutshell, 2nd edition

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Potato Soup

I LOVE this potato soup! It is definitely our family's favorite. It is easy to make, AND . . . it cooks in a crock-pot! I have a serious obsession with crock-pot recipes. I LOVE making things in the morning and having them ready to go by dinner time. Another cool thing about this recipe is that it FREEZES pretty well! I know it is very surprising to be able to freeze something with potatoes, but this soup can handle it.

8 C. potatoes (diced and peeled)
1/2 C. chopped onion
4 1/2 C. water
6 - 8 chicken bouillon cubes
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese (softened)
1/2 lb. bacon (cooked and crumbled)

In a crock-pot, combine first 6 ingredients. Cover and cook on LOW(if you try to cook it on high, the potatoes will be mushy) for 8-10 hours (for me, it seems to only take about 6 hours). Add cream cheese. Stir until blended. Garnish with bacon.

Thanks Quick Cooking magazine!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Crock-Pot Taco Meat

Tacos or burritos are really a staple at our house. We eat them a lot and I never get tired of them! It is such a great way to get our kids to eat different kinds of beans . . . not to mention being a super easy meal.

Here is a recipe I came across a few years ago. We make this stuff all the time when we want to have tacos. Have fun with it!

1 large onion, chopped
3 lbs lean meat (can be ground, stew meat or a roast. I often use ground)
3 cloves garlic
3/4 C. dry beans (sort and rinse beans . . . or use a 15 oz can pinto beans, undrained)
3 C. water (reduce to 1 1/2 - 2 if using canned beans)
2 envelopes taco seasoning mix ( 1/2 C.)

Combine chopped onion, meat, garlic, beans, water, and taco seasoning in crock-pot. Stir well. Cover and cook on high for about 8 - 10 hours. (Mine often is done a lot sooner . . . just depends on your crock-pot I guess . . . also, I often use ground beef which is cooked before putting it in the crock-pot).

Before serving, shred meat (if a roast) by pulling apart with two forks and mix with juices.

We use this recipe for tacos, burritos and taco salads. Enjoy!

Thanks Janice R!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Banana Bread

I have few banana bread recipes, but I thought it would be fun to share my FAVORITE one. This is the one that turns out the best for me. I really like the texture and the taste! Hope you enjoy!

2 C. sugar
1/2 C. shortening
2 eggs
3 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1 C. sour milk
4 mashed bananas
1 C. nuts (optional)
2 tsp. vanilla

Cream sugar and shortening. Add eggs and mix REALLY well.
Sift flour, salt, baking powder and add alternately with sour milk to which baking soda has been added.
STIR in mashed bananas, nuts (if desired) and vanilla.
Pour into greased bread pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Thanks Mom!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Chicken Mushroom Braid

This is a fun, EASY light sandwich that we will often eat for dinner. One of the ingredients is spinach, which is great because my kids don't even know that they are eating it!

16 thawed Rhodes rolls
3-4 cooked chicken breasts, cubed
1 C. sliced mushrooms, chopped coarsely
1 C. fresh spinach leaves, chopped coarsely
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese

Roll/press rolls into a rectangle. Mix all ingredients and spoon mixture down center of dough, the long way.

Cut short slits on each side of the dough and "braid" crosswise over the mixture.

Let rise 30-40 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes

Serve with sauce of Cream of Mushroom soup, diluted 1/1 (or less if you want it thicker) with chicken broth.

Thanks Mom!