home-made bread—there’s nothing quite like it!
© 2011 by KV5R — Rev. Jan. 28, 2011.
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Taccuino Sanitatis (15th century Bread Shop)
Homemade bread is an ancient skill that everyone should master. It’s easy, fun, and best of all it tastes fantastic! I made bread in a bread machine for years, but it never turns out as well as expected and it always looks like a block, so I finally decided to fix my broken oven and learn how to make homemade bread from scratch. I avoided making handmade bread for years because I though it would be real messy and way too much work—all that flouring your countertop, kneading forever, etc. Well, on my first try, it didn’t make a mess and kneading for 10 minutes was rather fun, watching how the dough acts and getting a feel for it. My first ever hand-made bread was a large 3-rope braid, like a challah, and it turned out absolutely great!
Homemade Bread Recipes and Books
Do you need bread recipes? Look what I just found! Favorite Homemade Bread Recipes - 100 Delicious Bread Recipes (Kindle Edition) for the amazing price of $0.00! Don’t have a Kindle? No problem! You can buy one right here, or you can download free Kindle reader apps for your computer, tablet, or smartphone, or you can send a Kindle book to Kindle Cloud Reader and read it in any browser. It’s so easy!
Here is a giant list of free and low-cost homemade bread books.
If you’d like to start making breads, but haven’t taken the plunge, this article is for you. This is just about how it will go, step-by-step, all nice & concise. In the following pages are notes and photos I made while studying breadmaking and then making bread.
- Bread Terms Defined: Before you can learn breadmaking, you need to learn a little terminology. That makes all subsequent study much easier and more productive. Definitions collected from all over the web.
- My First Ever Handmade Bread - a big braided whole-wheat.
- Hybrid Bread - start it in the bread machine, finish it by hand—simple and easy!
- Bread Sticks and Fifteen-Bean Soup: the perfect crust for dipping.
- Getting started with a high-quality Sourdough Starter!
- My first sourdough bread: wrong pan, but it turned out well—crispy crust and a coarse, tangy crumb.
- Getting better: Sourdough French breads in a perforated french bread pan.
- Whole-wheat breads in the perforated pan.
- White breads in the perforated pan.
- Two whole-wheat challahs in 12-inch loaf pans — excellent!
- Kitchen Tips: Bakeware, kitchen tools, and things to get, without spending too much.
Like making your own custom soap, making custom bread is an enjoyable and useful skill. Once you get the basic feel for making and developing bread dough, progressing to fancy artisan breads is surprisingly easy. After the first rise and punch-down, shape it any way you want, place it in a nonstick bread pan, top it with egg and/or butter, sprinkle on seeds and/or herbs, let it rise again, then pop it in and bake it. Or, for a fancy boule, make the second rise in a brotform (aka banneton or proofing basket), then when risen, gently turn it out on to a pre-heated baking stone or better, a nice La Cloche dome baker.
My goal in writing these articles is to pass along some practical knowledge and give you the confidence to give it a try. Of course, you can always just go and buy fancy bread, but you already know it’s too expensive, not all that fresh, and not exactly what you wanted. So do a little reading online, maybe watch a few videos, gather your ingredients, and just go ahead and make a great bread! Then enjoy it!