Look what we woke up to this morning!
(Dexter made his first venture out into the snow this morning and left his mark all over the place as evidenced above. He didn’t want to come in after doing his business. He wanted to play!)
I have had an urge to bake bread–both in an effort to expand my culinary prowess and to save a few bucks–and I was moved to action last night, thanks in part to a desire for a warm, comforting meal of soup and bread and to a post from one of my favorite bloggers.
I found a simple recipe for whole-wheat bread and modified it to make only two loaves instead of three. I got out the ingredients, cleared off my counters and got to work.
I proofed the yeast with warm water and honey, dumped in bread flour and mixed until it was combined.
I added in more honey, salt and melted butter and mixed until they were incorporated.
I measured out the whole-wheat flour and mixed until
my arm fell off most of the flour was incorporated. I floured the counter, turned out the dough and got my arm workout in for the day kneaded until the rest of the flour was incorporated. I greased a bowl, put the dough in the bowl and covered it with a dish towel. I set the bowl on top of the warm stove to allow it to rise.
I punched down the dough, divided it between two loaf pans and let it rise a bit again while Christopher and I went for a quick 2.25-mile run with Dexter. We returned about 25 minutes later, and I slid the dough into the oven to bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
We stretched and showered while the intoxicating smell of fresh-baked bread filled the apartment and while Dexter stared out the window. I pulled the bread out of the oven and let it cool slightly.
I sliced off a couple pieces of bread, topped them with smoked gouda cheese and placed them under the broiler to brown. We enjoyed the bread with bowls of roasted butternut squash soup, and I
devoured savored two more slices plain as a snack before bed.
The bread was delicious–springy inside; slightly crispy outside; rich, earthy and faintly sweet flavor–and only about 100 calories a slice. (I sliced the first few pieces so I would get 16 slices from a loaf.)