It's hard to beat a loaf of freshly baked bread. The aromas that fill your house, the steam rising off the right-out-of-the-oven loaf as you stuff a butter-slathered slice in your mouth. Bread machines do a great job of doing the work for you if you aren't a skilled baker, but using a machine isn't quite as rewarding as making a loaf from scratch. Bread baking can be a little tricky, with factors such as humidity and elevation playing a part in the science of baking good bread. But you don't have to be a pro to make some of the following bread recipes. The secret to easy bread is to find recipes that don't require kneading. Here are 10 easy recipes to give you a good start.
Banana Nut Bread
Combine and sift the dry ingredients and then add the remaining wet ingredients. Stir with a wooden spoon until ingredients are blended, but don't over-stir. Pour into two greased loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176.6 degrees Celsius) for 60-80 minutes. The addition of pineapple makes this bread exceptionally moist.
No Knead Crusty Bread
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the flour and salt, stirring until blended. The dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest 12 to 18 hours at about 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21.1. degrees Celsius).
The dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour your work surface and place dough on it. Sprinkle with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rest for about 15 minutes.
Gently shape dough into a ball. Cover with a dish towel and let rise for about 1 to 2 hours. When it's ready, the dough will have doubled in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
Preheat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit (246.1. degrees Celsius) for about 20 minutes. Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake another 15 to 20 minutes until the loaf is beautifully browned. Remove the bread from the Dutch oven and let it cool on a rack for at least 1 hour before slicing.
No Knead Batter Bread
Put 3 1/2 cups flour, yeast, sugar and salt into large bowl. Mix together, then add warm water and melted butter to dry mixture. Blend together till moistened and beat well to incorporate air into batter. Gradually add remaining flour until you have a stiff batter. Cover and let rise in warm place until it doubles. This takes about half an hour.
Stir the batter down and spread in a greased loaf pan. Cover and allow to rise till batter reaches the top of the pans. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176.6 degrees Celsius) until golden brown. Brush tops with butter as soon as you remove loaves from oven, then, carefully remove from the pans and cool on wire rack.
- 3/4 cup brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 1/4 cup potato starch
- 1/4 cup arrowroot starch
- 1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
- 2 teaspoons gluten-free baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 1/4 cups vanilla soya milk
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 1/4 cup oil
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup caramelized bakers honey or other liquid honey
- 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
In a large bowl, combine the rice flour, buckwheat flour, potato starch and arrowroot starch, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt using a wire whisk. In a separate bowl, combine soya milk, oil, beaten eggs, vinegar and caramelized bakers honey and mix with a wire whisk. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture and fold with a spatula just until mixed. Add fresh blueberries and mix.
Pour mixture into a greased 9x5 loaf pan and bake in a preheated 350 degree Fahrenheit (176.6 degree Celsius) oven for about 70 to 80 minutes or until temperature registers 180 degrees Fahrenheit (82.2 degrees Celsius) when a thermometer is inserted into middle of loaf. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan and then cool on wire rack.
Place water in a large bowl and stir in lecithin, canola oil, honey, gluten and yeast. Mix well and let it stand for 10 minutes. Add salt, beaten egg and six cups of flour. Stir well for about two minutes. Stir in four or five more cups of flour until dough is firm enough to knead. Dough should be soft, yet easy to handle. Knead for five minutes and then let it sit for about 15 minutes. Repeat twice (note: grease your hands and workspace for the last kneading to keep from adding too much flour).
Shape into 4 loaves and put into loaf pans. Let rise until doubled in size. Carefully put them into your oven and cook at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176.6 degrees Celsius) for around 25 minutes.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit (121.1 degrees Celsius). Combine the water, yeast, and sugar in a small bowl and let stand until bubbly -- about 8 minutes. Combine the flours and salt in a large, ovensafe bowl and warm in the oven for 5 minutes. Place the flour mixture and the yeast mixture in a food processor, turn it on and add the milk in a steady stream. If needed, add more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until dough is smooth and supple. Place the dough in a large, oiled bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover with a clean, damp kitchen towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles in volume -- about 1 hour. Punch the dough down, transfer it to a clean work surface, and knead for 3 minutes. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for 30 minutes.
Sprinkle a baking sheet with cornmeal and set aside. Divide the dough into 8 pieces, gently form each into a patty, and place the patties on the prepared baking sheet, turning to coat both sides lightly with cornmeal. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for 30 minutes.
Lightly oil a cast-iron skillet and heat over low heat. Place four muffins in the skillet and cook until the bottoms are golden brown -- about 15 minutes per side. Repeat with remaining four muffins. Store the muffins in an airtight container for three days, or freeze for up to one month. Serve toasted.
[source: Country Living]
Sweet Potato Biscuits
Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (218.3 degrees Celsius). Sift the flour, baking powder, allspice, cloves and salt in a large bowl. Use the tips of your fingers to blend in the brown sugar.
Cut in the chilled butter and shortening with a pastry cutter or pulse in a food processor until the mixture resembles coarse, crumbly meal. Then, stir in the mashed sweet potatoes and knead until the dough just holds together.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently for 1 minute, adding a little flour as necessary to incorporate all the ingredients.
Pat the dough in a 1/2-inch (1.27-cetimeter) circle and let it rest, covered with a clean towel, for 10 to 15 minutes.
Cut out the biscuits with a 2-inch (5.08-centimeter) round cutter dipped in flour. Gather the scraps, pat out again and cut into biscuits. Arrange them about 3/4 of an inch (1.905 centimeters) apart on an ungreased baking sheet and brush the tops with milk. Bake until golden brown -- 10 to 12 minutes. Cool the biscuits on a rack.
[source: Country Living]
Pour tepid water into a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast to the water and then the salt, mix well.
Add all the flour and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon until ingredients are mixed. Don't over knead. Leave the bread dough in the mixing bowl and cover loosely. Allow to rise for 2 hours, or until doubled in size.
Pre-heat the oven and place a baking sheet in there. Tear off a large ball, about the size of a small melon, and knead it for about 1 minute with floured hands and on a floured board or place it in a greased and floured loaf tin. Allow to rise for another 20 to 30 minutes.
Bake at 450 degrees Fahrenheit (232.2 degrees Celsius) for 30 minutes or until well-risen, brown and the loaf sounds hollow when it is tapped on the underside. Remove the bread and cool on a cooling rack.
Amish White Bread (In Bread Machine)
Dissolve sugar in water, then stir in yeast. Let stand until yeast forms a creamy foam (about 15 minutes). Put into bread machine pan and add oil. Swish around to mix them together.
Add flour on top, and salt on top of the flour. Set machine to dough setting and start.
When dough has risen the first time, take it out of the bread machine pan and work it lightly in your hands to get the air bubbles out . Form into a loaf and put in a greased loaf pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place about 30-45 minutes, until almost doubled in size.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176.6 degrees Celsius) for 25 to 30 minutes or until done. If loaf is browning too quickly, cover top loosely with foil. When bread is finished, take it out of the oven and allow it to set for 5 minutes. Remove from pan, place on wire rack and cover until loaf is cool.
[source: Tammy's Recipes]
Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a cookie sheet. Mix flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in butter until you get fine crumbs; a food processor works best for achieving this consistency. Place mixture in large bowl, and add cranberries and raisins.
Beat milk and egg with a fork, and add milk and egg mixture to flour mixture; stir with fork until moistened.
Drop 12 heaping spoonfuls, 2 inches (5.08 centimeters) apart onto prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with the 1 tablespoon sugar.
Bake 13 minutes or until golden. Cool on rack.
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- "Amish White Bread." Tammysrecipes.com http://www.tammysrecipes.com/amish_white_bread
- "Drop Scones." Recipezaar.com http://www.recipezaar.com/Drop-Scones-So-Easy-23617
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- "Homemade English Muffins." Countryliving.com http://www.countryliving.com/recipefinder/homemade-english-muffins-3873
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- "Peggy's Easy Bread Recipe." Thesimplewoman.blogspot.com http://thesimplewoman.blogspot.com/2008/03/peggys-easy-bread-recipe.html
- "Sweet Potato Biscuits." Countryliving.com http://www.countryliving.com/recipefinder/sweet-potato-biscuits-2994