March 31, 2010

The Lovely Lady Baker - Maple Oat Bread

Bread Bread Bread! I love making and eating bread. Hope you all had a chance to try at least one of the recipes. I made the Maple Oat Bread and will probably try the Dill bread at some point soon. Thanks Dana for choosing this month's recipe. Check out the rest of my post on the Lovely Lady Baker.

March 30, 2010

Lemon Rolls

I make yeast breads often, once I got over my initial trepidation about yeast- will it rise? what if it doesn't?- I discovered how versatile and easy to work with it is. In fact, I normally let my mixer do all the work.

I decided to go in another direction this month, I had a lot of beautiful lemons, and when I saw this recipe for lemon sticky buns on The Kitchn I decided to go for it.

Delicious, of course.

March 23, 2010

March Madness

I love making yeast bread and usually make some for my family about twice a month. My family always looks forward to homemade bread and we all love the aroma that fills our home. The smell of homemade bread baking in the oven makes grumpiness go away and makes our home feel solid.
I chose to make the Maple Oatmeal Bread. It was a little plain, not as flavorful as my old standby, which my family calls Redeemer Communion Bread. The Maple Oatmeal Bread had good texture and was easy enough to make – it just wasn’t memorable.

March 9, 2010

March Recipes: Yeast Breads

Hello Coven members. Our March recipes were picked by Dana, and she knows bread. Here is what she had to say:

"When Harvard and I were in our early 20s we taught “University For Man” bread basics classes. I wanted to help people to see that using yeast needn’t be just for grandmothers or James Beard kind of people. Yeast casserole breads were an easy transition to give confidence. This one is beautiful and easy to wow company with without much effort. It is also delicious!"

Dilly Casserole Bread

1 pkg. dry yeast
1 c. creamed cottage cheese (lg. curd better)
2 tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. dill seed (Note - not dill weed)
1 tbsp. butter
1/4 tsp. soda
2 1/4 - 2 1/2 c. flour

1/4 c. warm water
¼ c. finely minced onion (not instant)
1 tsp. salt
1 egg

Sprinkle yeast over warm water. Heat cottage cheese to lukewarm in microwave. Combine in mixing bowl with sugar, onion, butter, dill seed, salt, soda, egg and yeast mixture. Add flour to make stiff dough, beat well after each addition of flour. Let rise to double in size in warm place, 50 to 60 minutes. Stir down, turn into well greased round casserole. Let rise again until light and double in size. Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown, 40 to 50 minutes. Brush with butter, sprinkle with coarse salt. Remove from pan when cool. Makes 1 round.

Nothing beats real bread dough coming alive under the heel of your hands though. I had planned to post pictures of some of the kneeding/shaping techniques when I post my entry. This recipe is my own adaptation based on wanting one loaf at a time now and wanting something that would hold a little longer without going stale so quickly (the bane of good bread with no preservatives added)…thus, it is a little denser and chewier than the average bread. Makes GREAT toast and I use it a lot for feeding guests because it stays moist when sitting in a basket.

Here is another yeast bread option to try this month:

Maple Oatmeal Bread-one 1.5 lb loaf

Sprinkle 2 tsp. yeast (bread machine or regular) over 1 c. lukewarm (105-115 degrees) water—let stand while combining

¼ c. oil

¼ c. real maple syrup (not pancake syrup)—can substitute honey

1 ¾ tsp. salt

add yeast mixture.

Stir in 1 c. rolled oats

Stir in enough of the 3 cups bread flour (opt. substitute 1 c. whole wheat flour and 2 c. bread flour) until a stiff dough

Kneed in the rest of the flour, and more if necessary, until the dough can be kneeded for 5-10 min.

The ball should spring back into shape when indented and be smooth and not sticky.

Roll in a greased bowl and leave to rise in a warm place with a damp towel over the top until double (1.5-2 hours)

Punch down and shape loaf

Let rise uncovered up to 1 hour or until less than double in bulk (don’t let it over rise)

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven until the top is golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped, 30 to 40 minutes.

Here is a link to the printable version. If you haven't ever made a yeast bread before - feel free to post some questions in the "comments" section and I can try and answer them - if I can't maybe Dana will be able to step in.

Happy Baking

The lovely Lady Baker

March 2, 2010

Better late than never!

Since I chose the lemon tart recipe I wanted to share a picture of my creation. I really loved this recipe. It was the right amount of "gooeyness" and I liked the advice of adding the pine nuts. They did add a very earthy flavor. For the lemon juice I squeezed freshly picked meyer lemons which gave it it's added sweetness. It was little over-kill, but I couldn't resist trying it with some lemoncello which surprisingly paired quite nicely.

We Heart Cookies...

When I saw February’s recipe I immediately thought of December…and the sour cream cookies I didn’t get to. It seemed like a fine way to mitigate a busy schedule and still get some baking done. I made the cookies right before making the trek to Lake Tahoe to ski. Instead of cutting out Christmas trees, stockings, and stars, I cut out hearts – for Valentines Day! The cookies kind of grew on me. They are not very sweet on their own and the dough was stiff. The stiffness of the dough made for a thicker cookie – which I thought was a plus. The frosting was yummy – and since the cookie on its own was not too sweet, a nice addition. We all enjoyed the cookies – they added a sweet touch to our ski weekend.

March 1, 2010


I was prepared to crash and burn on this one. The recipe was looked so complicated, there were so many steps, so much folding... so much deliciousness.

These came out so well, my husband and I oohed and ahhed, we mmmed and ughhhhed. I am almost too impressed with myself. It's just another one of those recipes that, in the end I can't believe I actually made from a little flour, milk and butter.

I did have one tiny casualty though... feel free to read about that on The Maiden Metallurgist.