I am back!!!
I realized I have not posted anything in a year!! With all of this COVID-19 craziness, I thought a new recipe would be a good idea to share.
I went to my local grocery store about three weeks ago and bought a loaf of bread, I totally forgot about it until I opened my pantry and there it was, looking exactly the same it did when I bought it. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with buying bread at the store but I started thinking of all the preservatives that the bread had to have in order for it to not go bad in 2-3 weeks. So I started doing some research on these preservatives, and what I found was not good! Some of the preservatives used in our bread also appear on things like yoga mats, explosives and petroleum products!! I read this article called “Banned bread: why does the US allow additives that Europe says are unsafe?” I have linked it if you would like to read it.
So this got me thinking, why can’t I use make my own bread? It is not hard and most of the ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. I started by making a simple loaf of bread (I will post this recipe in the following weeks) and let me tell you, I have fallen in love with bread making. There is something satisfying in knowing what is in your food that you are feeding your body and your family.
The first recipe I will share.. drum roll… Garlic Bread!! Who doesn’t love garlic bread?! I made it last week for our pasta night and it was a success!
The ingredients you will need:
– 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
– 2 1/4 teaspoon (1 packet) active dry yeast
– 1/2 cup of water
– 1/2 whole milk
– 2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 1 tablespoon olive oil
– 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
– 3 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley
– 2 teaspoons minced garlic
– pinch of salt
– 1 cup shredded cheese
– 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
– Ground black pepper to taste
I know it sounds like a lot of things, but trust me you can do this!
In a small bowl, combine sugar and yeast. Combine the 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of milk in a mug and warm it up. The liquid should be around 110 to 115 degrees, then pour warm water over sugar mixture and let it stand for 10 minutes until yeast is foamy. (Important note: make sure the warm milk/water mixture is between 110 to 115. If it is cold, the yeast will NOT activate and if it is to hot, you will kill the yeast.)
While the yeast is activating, in a large bowl or in the bowl of the stand mixer with dough hook attachment, mix the flour and salt until combined. Pour the yeast mixture (after the 10 minutes are over); stir with wooden spoon or on low speed with dough hook host until dough forms. Transfer dough to a well- floured surface and knead by hand for 10-15 minute, until the dough is smooth, soft, elastic and only slightly sticky. OR, knead dough in stand mixer with dough hook for 5-7 minutes on medium speed, until it is ready. Note: for both options, you can add a 1 teaspoon at a time if you need a bit more flour. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl. (I get some olive oil, and drizzle it onto the bowl and with a paper towel, spread it all around the bowl). Once the dough is in the bowl, cover with plastic wrap or towel and let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour until it has doubled in size. I like to put the dough inside a cabinet next to the stove. Whatever you do, do NOT open the cabinet door or peek inside the covered bowl or you can release the warmth it needs to rise.
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a cooking sheet and set to the side. In a small bowl, stir in softened butter, your cut parsley, garlic and a pinch of salt until well combined.
Punch down the dough and divide it into 2 pieces. Place both pieces on a lightly floured surface and let it rest for 5 minutes, covered with a clean kitchen towel. After the 5 minutes, on a floured surface, roll 1 piece of dough into a rectangle, roughly around 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread butter mixture evenly over the dough. Next, sprinkle cheese and a dash of black pepper. Roll the dough from long end into a 14 inch log. Pinch the sides to seal.
With log seam side-down, carefully slice dough almost completely through into a 1-inch rolls. Make sure they are still connected at the bottom. Lift dough. carefully and transfer it to your prepared cookie sheet. Rewear until you have both logs.
Spread the remaining butter mixture over the top of the rolls. Cover the pan and let the dough rest for 15 to 20 minutes.
Step 7: Bake bread for 20- 25 minutes until deep golden brown.