These bagels are left over from Ragnar Relay in October.
Yes, you read that correctly…..OCTOBER….this is February!
Notice the complete lack of mold?
As a matter of fact, they still have the exact same texture.
This got me asking the question: if a piece of bread will not mold or dry out, what is it doing to my body?
This is why I started making my own bread.
I got a Kitchen Aid stand mixer for Christmas last year and decided to try to make a loaf of bread. I discovered, not only is it easy, but homemade bread is much tastier than even the fancy store loaves and a fraction of the price.
M and I were…ahem….forced…yeah, that’s it….to eat many loaves of bread as I mastered the recipe.
There were a few failures along the way, like this one:
But I finally developed a recipe that we love!
Honey Oat Bread:
1 c. King Arthur Bread flour
1.25 c. King Arthur Whole Wheat flour
1/2 c. rolled oats
1 tbs. honey
1/2 c. water
1/2 c. milk
1 tsp. dry active yeast
2 tbs. butter plus more for greasing pan
Step one: proof the yeast
Heat water and milk to 110 degrees. (If you don’t have a thermometer, just stick your finger in it. The average body temperature is 98 degrees so it should feel just barely warm.)
Add the heated water and milk to the honey in the bowl of your stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast over the top. Allow to sit for 10 minutes for the yeast to become foamy.
Step two: mix
Attach the dough hook to the mixer. Add 2 tbs. of melted butter to the yeast mixture, turn the mixer on low, and gradually add the dry ingredients until the the mixture is combined. Turn the mixer up to a medium-low speed (I use #2) and knead the dough for around 6 minutes. (If you don’t have a stand mixer, just knead by hand but increase the time to 10-15 minutes or until the dough is very elastic.)
Cover the bowl with a tea towel and place in a warm area to rise until doubled in size (around an hour). I just put the bowl on a heating pad set on medium.
Step three: the second rise
Punch dough down, flatten into a rectangle. Roll the dough into a log and place seam side down into a greased loaf pan. (Every recipe I have read says “lightly greased” after several loaves sticking, I have learned that “lightly greased” means butter the crap out of it. I usually use 1-2 tbs. butter!
Cover with tea towel and allow to rise until it comes to the top of the loaf pan (about an hour). Once again, I use the heating pad for this.
Step four: bake
Bake at 400 degrees for around 30 minutes. When you remove the bread from the loaf pan (and if you used enough butter, it should slide right out), it should sound hollow when you thump the bottom.
Allow to cool on a cooling rack….if you can wait!