I took a VERY extended break from the blog – I’m not sure if anyone missed me but I decided to re-commit in 2011. So get ready because it’s going to be an incredible year! I’m going try to build this blog off my favorite components of other blogs – and I would love feedback! I’m committed to making this blog a success…So here we go…
My goal is to review a product or habit/tip/technique every week or so. I’m going to lead by example! And I’m inspired by others actions so hopefully you will be inspired by mine.
Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day is one of those books that seems super random – at least at first. Bread? 5 minutes? No way. And then you read the concept behind the bread that can magically be made in 5 minutes.
Basically, you make a huge amount of dough and bake it in small loaves, rolls, etc as needed. Lots of flour and yeast mixed in the same container that you plan to refrigerate the dough in. Bread dough can apparently be refrigerated in an airtight container for a few weeks. Then you just pull off a chunk, shape it up, and bake.
And it really is as easy as that! I usually go right to my vintage KitchenAid mixer for any and all purposes but decided to try just making it in the storage container. (Just for total honesty – the KitchenAid mixing bowl was dirty and I was too lazy to wash it) The floor, yeast, water, etc turned in to dough very quickly and the book says to let it rise for 2 hours out of the fridge or 5 hours in the fridge – and then it’s ready. No kneading! No second rise! I made a batch right away and it got a thumbs up from my visiting family.
A few days later, I came home from work and pulled off a chunk and let it sit out for 40 minutes per the cookbook’s instructions and then baked. My entire apartment smelled delicious and the bread was just plain yum.
The concept gets a THUMBS UP. Very easy. Very delicious. And it’s such an easy way to eat simple food. I love eating food when I know exactly what’s in it and when I can pronounce every ingredient in your meal. Very Food Inc, I know. An incredibly easy way to be healthy and impress your friends! I have also found that I feel better and healthier when I eat preservative-free food and even lose weight just from eating “back to the basics” meals.
I VERY rarely buy new books. While I have purchased a few from Goodwill or the flea market but it really has been a year or two since I purchased a brand-spankin’ new book. I used my Amazon giftcard to buy this cookbook as well as The Pioneer Woman Cooks (a review is coming after I finish a few more recipes!). Here is why you should also buy this book – the recipes that follow and all the helpful tips! You can easily substitute the flour for organic flour or use wheat or rye bread recipe to up your fiber intake. I’m looking forward to making a few batches of these breads during this crazy Ohio winters…starting with a rye!
I only have 2 issues with the book and concept.First, it recommends purchasing a lot of tools and equipment (oven thermometer, baking stone, pizza peel, bread knife, broiler pan, a scraper thing…). You might already have some of the items. And the book makes it sound like you NEED these items to make the bread properly. However, I just put the dough on a cookie sheet and let it do its thing. The crust was light and not super textured but the bread itself was delicious. I’m planning on purchasing a broiler pan and a makeshift pizza peel but that might be it.
Eco-Chic Tip: Buy an unglazed 19’x19′ tile from your local tool store to use as a makeshift pizza stone.Wash thoroughly first.
The second issue is silly BUT what if I don’t want to eat 4 batches of rye bread in a row? I like variety! The solutions that I’ve come up with include freezing any dough that might go bad OR baking it and giving it away to my very hungry and thankful friends. So maybe it’s just one problem…
Check the book out from the library or read their blog to investigate…but Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day really is as easy as it sounds!