Saturday, October 15, 2011

Handmade Bread and Cinnamon Rolls

Early last week I took my first bread making class. I have never made bread so I needed to know all the ins and outs of how to do it. Since I don't have a mixer I was disappointed to find out that the class was centered around one. I tried to use some of the tips she gave us to make bread the old-fashioned way today, by hand. I made the dough, split it, and then made cinnamon rolls and a loaf of bread. It tasted good. It was sweet, soft and had a nice crust. The problem that I had was that it was pretty dense. It wouldn't rise. Where I live in Colorado is considered high altitude so maybe that was an issue. For a first attempt I am very proud of myself. I will be trying it again until I get it right. I welcome any tips or suggestions.

I got this recipe from by Nita Crabb


    3 cups warm water (110 degrees F)
    2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
    2/3 cup honey
    5 cups bread flour
    5 tablespoons butter, melted
    1 tablespoon salt
    3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

Yields 3 portions of dough

    Time: 3 Hours Recipe:

In a large bowl, mix warm water, yeast, and 1/3 cup honey. Add 5 cups white bread flour, and stir to combine.

Let set for 30 minutes, or until big and bubbly.

Mix in 3 tablespoons melted butter, 1/3 cup honey, and salt. Stir in 2 cups whole wheat flour. Flour a flat surface and knead with whole wheat flour until not real sticky - just pulling away from the counter, but still sticky to touch. This may take an additional 2 to 4 cups of whole wheat flour. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat the surface of the dough.

Cover with a dishtowel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled.

Punch down, and divide into 3 loaves. Place in greased 9 x 5 inch loaf pans, and allow to rise until dough has topped the pans by one inch. 

Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes. Do not over bake. Lightly brush the tops of loaves with 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine when done to prevent crust from getting hard. 

Or make one loaf into cinnamon rolls!

On a oiled surface roll out 1 portion of dough until it is about 1/2 inch thick. Spread warm butter, brown sugar and generously sprinkle with cinnamon 

(you can also add nuts and dried fruit if you want).

Roll in to one big roll and cut 1 inch thick rolls off. Place in greased 9x13 baking pan. Let rise for about 30 minutes. 

Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes. Do not over bake. Remove from oven and immediately add frosting.

This is a vanilla frosting with lemon zest to give it a little extra kick. It reminds me of Pillsbury Orange Cinnamon Rolls. If you want the recipe let me know. 

Cool completely and store in airtight container in refrigerator. You can freeze them too. I even read that you can freeze and reheat cinnamon rolls after they are cooked and frosted.

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