6-Ingredient Bread Recipe Tutorial – EASY

I’ve made this recipe a million times, I could make it in my sleep. I might be sleeping right now, who knows? I’ve added this and that to transform it, but every bread I’ve made, starts here.

When I was breastfeeding my daughter, we realized she had trouble digesting dairy and soy. We had a hard time fitting special dairy and soy-free pre-made breads into our budget, so I resolved to make my own. I just really love sandwiches!

I had never made anything with yeast in it before this whole dairy-free soy-free ordeal, and I had very little experience baking at all.

I dove right into it, I made 850 million loaves. I ate bread, soy-free hummus, and lunch meat for 18 months straight. Then, all of a sudden she weaned, and I’ve now turned myself a pretty whippy chef. We still buy loaves of cheap regular bread, but sometimes I make a little extra effort and pound this out.

Ingredients:

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

2 Tbsp sugar

2 1/4 cup warm water

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp salt

5-6 cups unbleached flour

Here we go

First, proof the yeast. 2 ¼ tsp (or one packet) yeast with 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and 2 ¼ cups 120-130 degree water (just hot enough to hurt your wrist a little when you run water over it)

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After about ten minutes of proofing, add the 2tbsp oil, 1 tablespoon salt and 2 cups of the flour.
Mix until combined.

 

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amount of flour top left to bottom right- 3 cups, four cups, 4.5 cups, 5 cups

Work the rest of the flour in, one cup at a time, until dough is sort of smooth.

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This is too sticky

It should be juuuuuust barely still sticky. If your hands get sticky, slap that flour pile, and keep working a little flour in at a time.

You can coat with a small amount of oil in a large bowl and cover to let rise for about an hour or until it’s doubled in size. I just let mine rise on the counter with no oil, because I like the crust it kind of makes.

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The amount of added flour depends on a few different things, including the humidity in your house. What’s important is the texture of the dough. I had a lot of flour left over but I didn’t waste it, I made two little tortillas, ha.

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Punch down and divide into two rolled loaves and set in oiled bread pan, and cover to rise an additional 45 minutes.

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I manhandled one of the loaves, but it ended up rising evenly. What a metaphor…

Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for about 35 minutes, when tapped it should sound hollow and the outside should be a golden-y color

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See, the lumpy loaf ended up being totally fine!

Let cool on rack, then you can either freeze it or cut it right then and there for a sandwich or something. If the bread doesn’t come out on its own, you can wiggle a knife around the edges to loosen it, just remember to oil that pan a little more next time.

 

I like to dip mine in soup since I tend to under knead, and sometimes that makes for a more loose texture.

I hope you try this recipe, it may seem like a lot to take on, but you really have only about 20 minutes hands-on time. Even less if you use a stand mixer! I used to use a stand mixer for this, but for some reason cleaning the machine hurts my brain and I end up neglecting it. I knead the bread on a roul-pat, so clean up couldn’t be more simple!

Bread is my favorite food, there’s a million different types of bread and you can eat it with basically any meal. Homemade bread can turn any boring BLT into a masterpiece, or any vegan soup into a belly-filling weekly fav.

You may be able to substitute the ingredients with different types of flour, or even use more sugar for a sweeter bread. Playing with it is half the fun!!

Have you ever made homemade bread before? Did it turn out? What problems did you face? I could ramble about it forever if you’d let me, so feel free to share in the comments!
Thanks so much for reading, have a great day!

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The Best Sugar Cookies

I am on a journey to the secret of pinterest-perfect sugar cookies. I’m taking it kind of personally. I want tasty, perfect texture, skillfully placed icing, adorable cut out characters. I’m working on it.

I think the first place you start with making “fancy” cookies is to have a solid recipe. I’ve tried this one a few times and it has never let me down. I’ve only ever made blobulous cookies before I came across this recipe.

Here’s an example of the difference of my cookies now to my cookies from 2015

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I hope that picture is enough to convince you to switch to this recipe. I’m passionate about it, ha.

Here it is:

Ingredients:

2 sticks room temperature unsalted butter

1 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

*1/2 tsp almond extract

1 large room temperature egg

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3 cups all-purpose flour

*the almond extract is not required for them to look perfect, but the taste is just slightly different and adds a different dimension with the almond extract

Having the butter and eggs room temperature is an extra step in the prep, but I was doing some research on cookie science and I learned a few things about that. If the butter is too warm, the cookies will get droopy and lose their shape. This was one of the biggest improvements to my technique, as I always used to use melted butter and never once thought of the repercussions.

INSTRUCTIONS

Step 1: Preheat to 350 and cream the butter and sugar together

Step 2: Once the sugar and butter is combined, add the extracts and egg, and beat until well combined

Step 3: Add baking powder and salt, then add flour one cup at a time. It may seem a smidge dry, but once you work it a little, it comes together.

Step 4: Cut ball of dough in half and roll out anywhere from 1/4 inch to 3/8 or really however you want.

Step 5: Cut out shapes with cookie cutter or make balls and flatten

Step 6: Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake in middle rack for 6-8 minutes. 6 minutes is usually exactly right for my oven. You may have to experiment to find your sweet spot. As you can see, I put mine relatively close together.

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I leave them to finish cooking on the hot baking sheet for 5-10 minutes or however long it takes me to finish cleaning up the giant mess I just made. Then I put them on a cooling rack so they fully cool.

Waiting until they’re fully cooled to put the icing on is always so difficult…

But you must, or you’ll get cookies like in my last post.

For the cookies I made today, I made two different typed of icing, both with the same base. For the green dinosaurs, I put a dash of ground allspice in the powdered sugar, which is why it looks crunchy. It was an experiment. Pretty tasty, but it might work better in a whipped kind of icing.

I used:

2 tsp corn syrup

1 cup(or more) powdered sugar

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp milk

Last time I used water, but this time I wanted something a little more substantial. I had to add a bit more powdered sugar to thicken it up, and just added two drops of food coloring.

My goal was to be a little fancy with this, so I wanted to make like a peppermint design on the round cookies. I outlined it like all the tutorials said to do, then filled in after it dried a little.

To get the icing all the way to the edges of the outline, I used a toothpick to drag the icing while it was still wet.

The red design was made with two drops of red food coloring in a splash of water. I dipped a wooden toothpick in the red water, and dragged it in squiggly lines from the outer edge into the middle.

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It’s not perfect but from far away they look really great! Come to think of it, these would be cool for Halloween bloodshot eyeball cookies!

Well, there it is, my best attempt at cookies so far. I’ve grown a lot, and I’m very proud. I’m still on the lookout for perfect icing, so if you have a good recipe, let me know!

I hope you all have a great day and awesome holidays and I’ll talk to you later!