I made bread!

I couldn’t have done it without my wonderful and amazing friend Simone, but I actually baked my very own bread today!  from scratch! no “kit”. no bread maker.  no cheating at all what-so-ever. 
one-hundred percent homemade, made from scratch, yummy and delicious bread! 

Back-story: While Aaron and I were in Peru for our honeymoon we made the decision that we were really going to make an effort to be more sustainable and frugal.
One thing that came to mind was: we didn’t want to purchase any more bread at the store.
We decided that baking our own bread was a much better alternative than purchasing $5 and $6 (!!!) loaves from Whole Foods that we didn’t even really enjoy. Our goal for 2012 is not to purchase any store-bought bread.

it all started with Simone’s starter that she has been growing for over a year (15 months, to be exact):

and this book:

and then I went to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s to get a few necessary ingredients:

Day 1: (yesterday) Simone came over and we made the sponge for our Whole Wheat Sandwich bread. 
We also spent some time prepping a few things for Day 2.

Day 2: (today) Simone came over around 9am and we began the bread-baking fun!

We actually made two different breads today, the Whole Wheat Sandwich bread (which we made the sponge for on Day 1) and a Rustic Ciabatta bread (which is only a 1 day bread, which means we were able to accomplish everything today). 

We started with the Whole Wheat Sandwich bread. We got the sponge out of the fridge, let it warm up a bit, and then turned it into dough:

[mmm, look at all of those poppy seeds, wheat berries, and sunflower seeds!]
then, after the dough doubled in size we divided it into three loaves, manipulated them a bit (Simone taught me some fancy dough kneading & shaping techniques!) and then let them proof in the loaf pans:

then, after spending some time in the oven, the loaves came out looking wonderful and delicious:

after they cooled for a while, we finally cut one open; look how beautiful it is inside!

While the Whole Wheat Sandwich bread was rising, proofing, and baking we made the dough for the Rustic Ciabatta bread and then formed it into loaves.
They came out of the oven smelling so wonderfully yummy, its a wonder I didn’t dive right into one:

it wasnt long before we were able to cut into one and try it…. and oh, my, goodness……

here is a picture of both the Whole Wheat Sandwich & Rustic Ciabatta bread made from scratch!

I wish I could express just how much FUN this was. 
Yes, its time consuming. Yes, its messy. but it really is so much fun

Not to mention our apartment smelled absolutely amazing for an entire day AND there was something warm & delicious to snack on once we were done AND I got to spend the whole day with my wonderful and amazing and talented friend Simone learning how to do this AND I will never have to purchase another loaf of bread at the store ever again!

I cant wait for Aaron to get home so that he can try it too.

Thank you Simone for taking 2 days out of your schedule to teach me how to bake my own bread!

3 responses

  1. Okay, I bake bread (not always, but sometimes), but. . . sponge? ~confused face~ I assume it has something to do with baking bread with a starter rather than packaged yeast, but I have NO IDEA how to do it this way, lol! Linked over from Frugally Sustainable, btw. Congrats on your first bread; looks like it was a rousing success. 🙂

  2. Hi Cassie! You're right, the "sponge" is a combination of the starter, water, a small bit of milk, flours, wheat bran, and salt. Making the sponge is day #1 of the Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread, which is a 2 day breadThen, the next day you start off by adding some more water, some active yeast, and a few other things. So, for this recipe, I actually use both the yeast starter AND live yeast!

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