Sunday, February 3, 2008

First, Bake Your Bread

Dani went to work today, and I baked bread. Dani calls me a good wifey, so it seems natural I would do something like this.

...except for my first ever attempt at baking bread, I decided I would take the opportunity to experiment, and bake two kinds of bread: knead, and no-knead.

The idea of baking bread intimidates the bejesus out of me. Yeast? Kneading? Resting? Rising? Sure, whatever. That's for other people. But, it was an itch I had to scratch. Plus I had some rosemary I wanted to use up, so to me, curiousity + Sunday afternoon + leftover rosemary + googling "rosemary bread" = baking bread.

So, while the no-knead bread was left to chill, I got to work on the more traditional, kneading variety. I decided to flavour it with rosemary and garlic, using this wonderful recipe (just adding chopped garlic after the first rest). It was a bit too easy, the dough smooth and elastic and fun to pull and prod with floured hands (who needs a KitchenAid? Um, ok, I really want one). But how would it taste? Amateur hour, home economics for sure...

No! It was boulangerie-perfect! A thin crunchy crust and a soft, nutty centre thanks to the wholemeal flour. Fragrant with rosemary and garlic. The kind of delicious that has you slicing off a piece, spreading with butter, enjoying like it was chocolate cake, then slicing off another, repeat...

Tomorrow, we'll see how the infamous no-knead bread goes, but at least one super success!


In to the oven they go...


And here they are ready, nice and brown


Just one slice...

And by the way, yes I am as obsessed with the Sarkozy/Bruni marriage as you'd expect me to be :-)

8 comments:

Deep Kick Girl said...

The bread looks amazing JB! You're a genius. Well done!

You'll be pickling onions and raising chickens in your backyard next.

Julia said...

Thanks KB! Haha pickling onions is actually on the agenda...

Lola is Beauty said...

hoo, spooky - I am baking bread right this very moment! (except it's the rye bread in a carton just add water one from ikea - still bread though...)

Cookie said...

did you use dry or fresh yeast? I will def be making this recipe later this week! (got tons of rosemary left) mmmmmmmm :-)

Karen said...

Fantastic! I constantly think of baking bread, and then get intimidated again. Good to see you had such success!

Julia said...

Lola - I would love to try rye, can't wait to see how yours goes!

Cookie - I used dry yeast (Dr Oetker). I think you will really like this one! If you use the recipe I linked to, which is really good, I didn't brush with butter at the end, it doesn't need it. But definitely add a chopped garlic clove, mmm.

Julia said...

Karen, I'm exactly the same, but it's as simple as flour yeast water - no great loss if it doesn't work - but if it does as I'm sure it would, you will be blown away!

Cookie said...

3 guesses what's in my bread making machine this very moment.... can't wait for the result!