Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Typical Errand Involving Junk Food

Does anyone else have trouble not picking up junk food when you make a quick trip to the grocery store? I sometimes eat something I'd not eat otherwise except for there it is staring at me in the check-out line at Kroger. It says to me, "Oh, come on, just this once!"

For my husband, it's Reece Cups. My kryptonite? Chocolate-iced doughnuts, but let's not even discuss how I eat those until I make myself sick.

Today, he came home from Kroger with peanut butter cups that claim to have no GMOs, partially hydrogenated oils, preservatives, artificial ingredients or corn syrup. Read about it here: http://getunreal.com/our-story/

They were right in the check out lane at Kroger and from their Website, they appear to be at a good many stores already. Try them out. Next time those shall-not-be-named peanuts & chocolate bars call out to me, I'm going to try the UNREAL version instead.

Learning to Make Bread

Earlier this month I was lucky enough to attend a bread making class with a friend of mine. Her friend Rena of The Royal Slice of Bread blog put on the class, which was basically a trial run for teaching bread-making classes in the future, which she hopes to do. Her post about the class.

It went great! Though I grew up watching my mother make bread, I never really learned the process. I saw it, but I didn't internalize it, memorize it. I also watched mom make pie crust, but even with her recipe, mine were awful. But, back to bread. Another reason I didn't learn bread-making is because as time went on, my mom no longer made bread very often. When she did, it was a special, yummy treat!

And so I jumped at the chance to attend the class. After I left, I was eager to try my skills, and here's how my first try at home went. (By the way, I'm a visual learner if you can't tell.)

The dough after kneading

The best part has got to be watching dough double its size. Seems like some kind of  supernatural  power.

After I'd already kneaded, I decided to make one loaf into cinnamon-raisin bread, so I kinda rolled them in the best I could before putting the bread in pans.

My loaf pans are undersized, so...

After their second rise. The one on the left was so high I had to punch it down a bit before baking.

All done! They looked wonderful, but did they taste wonderful?

Indeed they did! 

I prefer the taste of whole wheat for most bread, but I didn't have any whole wheat flour, so for these loaves pictured I used King Arthur's white whole wheat which yielded a lighter taster than my preference.

I'm excited to have learned something and am going to keep on practicing and making my own bread as much as possible! If you're interested in one of Rena's classes, contact her via her blog or The Royal Slice of Bread on Facebook.

And finally, if making bread isn't your thing, you can still get excellent bread at a great price at Old Mill bread Company or at Kroger stores that carry their bread.