Monday, March 7, 2011

Eating With Liz 2011 - Bread

For my new recipe of the week, I actually used an old one with a little changes. The price of food is getting a little ridiculous these days, and combined with the price of gas it seems that sometimes we have to choose between gas of food.  I figured that I could spend a few more dollars on flour and yeast I could make my own bread and save a bit of money in the over all scheme of things. But making bread in standard bread pans just doesn’t work out for me. The bread is way to big for a decent sandwich and shaped wrong to go in baggies for lunch.

I decided I needed to invest in a real sandwich bread pan. After a little research and looking around for the best price I settled on the USA Pans 13 x 4 x 4 Inch Pullman, Aluminized Steel with Americoat what a fantastic pan.  The pan is a little pricy but it is worth it.

USA Pans 13 x 4 x 4 Inch Pullman, Aluminized Steel with Americoat

The pan is a little pricy but it is worth it. Like I said, making my own bread will hopefully even out the price in the end. I bought it from There are some sandwich pans on there that look cheaper, but they don't come with the lid that you need to make the square loaf. So don't go cheap on this, and buy a good pan. I( bought the cheap cookie sheets the last time I got some, and I'm feeling sorry that I did now. Buy quality the first time and hopefully you wont have to replace it for quite a while.)  

Even though I didn't use a new recipe I used a new pan that I had never used before so it was it’s own adventure.

Another reason for making bread last night is because I find myself craving Baked Apple French Toast. With that in mind, I made one loaf of Sandwich Bread and one loaf of Cinnamon Swirl Bread.

Here is the basic bread recipe I use. It is from my grandma, and as I always like to say "Grandma's recipes never go wrong." I don't know how this will work in a bread machine, but you can give it a try.

Grandma Mc's Bread Recipe:


5-6 cups Flour
3 Tablespoons Sugar
2 teaspoons Salt
2 packages Yeast (or 4 1/2 teaspoons)
2 cups Warm Water
1/4 cup Oil

1 Tablespoon Butter

Sift together 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. (I use a whisk to incorporate them all together, who wants to actually own a sifter... just one more space taker-upper.) Heat oil and water together to just warm enough that you can comfortably stick your finger in it. Add to flour mixture. Mix in an additional 2.5 to 3 cups of flour. Turn out on to table and knead for 5 minutes. (or as I learned from my friend Holly, "knead until it's soft like a baby's bum.") Put kneaded dough into a greased bowl and let it raise for 1 hour. (Easy trick: turn oven to 400 degrees for 1 minute and then turn it off and put your bowl in the stove to raise. It works great if you have a cold house like mine.) Punch down dough and shape into the pans. Cook 2 loaves for 30 to 35 minutes at 375 degrees. Slather tops with butter when it comes out of the oven.

For Cinnamon Bread: mix 1/2 cup Sugar with 2 Tablespoons of Cinnamon, roll out dough and slather with softened or melted butter. Sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar mix, roll up like a Cinnamon roll, tucking in the sides as you go. Stuff it/them in to bread pan(s) and bake as above.

I made a few changes for the sandwich bread this time around. I substituted 2 cups of Whole Wheat Flour for 2 cups of White Flour. I'm not a super fan of whole wheat, but I do understand that it is good for me and that I should eat it, so I tried making this a little more healthy.  But I just made the standard recipe for the cinnamon bread. There's no use pretending to make that more healthy. For Pete's sake it is loaded with sugar and cinnamon... but it is very tasty.


** A note on baking bread in the new bread pan: The sandwich bread pan takes the entire bread recipe. What would make you two standard sized loafs will make you one loaf of sandwich bread.

It takes the same amount of cooking time to bake in the pan with the lid as it does in any other pan. Once the dough has been raised and punched down, shape it and place it into the square pan. Place the lid on the pan leaving it open a little so you can see what's going on, and let it raise again until it's just about filled the pan. (I got distracted last night watching the 25th Anniversary Concert of Les Miserables on PBS (if you didn't see it this weekend you really missed out) and my loaf rose right out of the pan through that little opening. I pulled off the extra dough and cooked myself a little roll on the side. Sadly though, once you touch the bread it deflates and you have to wait for it to raise back up.) Once it's raised almost to the top of the pan close the lid the rest of the way and throw it in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes then pull the lid off and let it bake for a few more minutes to let it get all crusty.


The bread all turned out wonderful, and I ended up making the recipe one and a half times for my need for cinnamon bread.

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