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Old 08-04-2012, 06:25 PM   #18
CMamma
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Re: Questions about homemade bread

Quote:
Originally Posted by HeatherlovesCDs View Post
I am thinking about trying to make our bread. We eat a TON of bread and go through about a loaf a day. We get it at Costco for about $2 a loaf, but almost always end up having to get some a the local grocery store also because we go through it so fast. The best price we can get there is $2.88 unless it's on sale. So, here are my questions:

1. If I use a bread machine (because I'm not really sure I'm up to totally doing it myself yet), will the loaves be similar in size to that which I get at the store? Like will I still only need about one loaf a day or will I need 2? I feel like when my mom used to do it they were smaller. We have 5 going on 6 kids. So, our bread needs are large.

2. Will it really save money? I can't imagine it won't, but still....will it really?

3. If we go through that much, am I going to be making bread constantly??

4. Will I be able to make 100% whole wheat that is soft? I prefer 100% whole wheat, but it needs to be soft. The kind I buy is soft and does not have any HFCS in it.

5. Will the loaves be good for sandwiches and toast, even french toast? That is mainly what we use it for.

6. Would I be better off with a bread machine or doing it by hand and why? I'd rather use a machine, but I'm open to hearing why that isn't the best way to go.

I do make things from scratch, but not a lot of baking type stuff, other than basic desserts and banana bread type breads. (I've never used yeast.) I've done homemade pasta, but not often. I like to cook, but I'm not really a baker. However, I can follow a recipe and I can definitely learn. But, it needs to be worth it for me to really want to take the time to learn and then keep it up.

Thanks!!

1. I don't use a bread machine. We had one & the bread just never came out right. I make all of our bread now & I've come up with some recipes that require NO kneeding. We got a handful of bread pans & I cook in those. Sometimes one loaf, but like today I did four loaves & a pan of muffins at one time (all different recipes too!). I REALLY enjoy cooking, so I'm almost always coming up with recipes or cooking.

2. It really will save money. Before we went GF, we bought wheat flour 40 lbs at a time - it's a real price saver to purchase in bulk. Now I'm using more expensive, specialty flours, but it still saves tons of money for us. AND I know what's in it.

3. You won't be making bread constantly. We are a family of four & all boys but me. My family inhales bread or carb types of products. I'll often make bread or biscuits daily to go with a meal, but I like to. But it's super easy to just fill your oven with a bunch of loaves so you can get the cooking down to every few days or once a week (or if you really don't want to deal with it often, make a ton & freeze).

4. Yes, 100% whole wheat that is yummy, soft, etc. If you would like me to share a recipe, I'm happy to do so. I have recipes that require kneading, as well as my favorite "no knead" bread JLMK if you're interested.

5. I make toast, sammies, bruschetta, french toast, croutons, bread crumbs, etc out of my breads. The trick is just getting comfortable with your recipe/s & finding a method that works best for your needs. But yes, it's totally doable!

6. I would suggest NOT using a bread machine, but that is just my preference. I know my MIL uses hers like crazy & it works fine for her needs (and it's the SAME one that didn't work for us - either we're not good at using them or maybe it has to do with where we live - I know that can change the way things bake). But while I say to do it by hand, I wouldn't use a spoon to mix either - I'd highly suggest a mixer - I was lucky enough to inheret a kitchenaide mixer, but any mixer would work - even handheld, or some blenders have attachments (we have one but I've never used it for doing bread dough).

As for yeast, I have recipes with and without yeast. We used to use yeast, but now due to a dietary issue, we no longer use it. So if you want to avoid using it, then it's completely possible.
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