Monday, October 20, 2008

Bread Heaven *sigh*
(baked fresh today)

I'm sorry I've not 'cooked up' any free scrapping or graphic goodies lately. I'm just going through a very dry spell right now with designing. One day, as it is with all things truly 'art' - I'll find myself creating again, and you will be rewarded for your patience. I just can't 'force' my art.

But I HAVE been cooking. A lot. I'm in love with the recipe for this artisan bread. I'm so in love with it I've been making it every which way for the past month. And now, I'm going to share it with you. Gina - you in particular (she's always making wonderful foods!) would love this recipe. Its SUPER EASY, inexpensive and you can make those artisan breads that one usually sees at bakeries, quicky, in your own home.

Its the crust, you know, in particular which I never thought I could achieve. This recipe makes a crust, that after its taken out of the oven to cool begins to audibly CRACKLE after about five minutes.

Yes, I've done the old 'sourdough' recipes that went around ages ago - making the starter and feeding it regularly and *bleh* I'm so not into all the work and stuff.

This bread? Its NO KNEAD. You just mix it up in a bucket (ice cream pail works great) - toss the few, simple ingredients in and mix a few times, put a loose fitting lid on (not sealed) and .... George is Your Uncle (we will see if Mr. Miles is paying attention today, he HATES all these old sayings LOL!)

After the initial mixing, let rise for 2 hours. You can now use the dough. Or not. This dough keeps up to two weeks in the fridge. The longer you leave it the more tasting toward sourdoughish it gets.

Each time you want fresh bread just haul your little bucket out of the fridge and cut off the size of dough you want and handling it as little as possible make a loaf. Let rise, (notice no kneading! - to me no kneading also means no mess!) Bake.

The recipe does call for you to use a pizza stone and cornmeal. I own no pizza stone, so I use a silpat mat. Nothing sticks to a silpat. You can find them at most kitchen stores. I'm sure the pizza stone would be the best thing, but I'm not running out to buy one, its going on my Christmas Wish List. So, using the Silpat I don't use cornmeal either.

The key is STEAM. When you bake this bread you keep a pan in the oven while heating, then when you put the bread in you QUICKLY toss some water in the pan and shut the door quick. I actually refresh the water a few times during the bake.

This bread is delish! And this is just the master recipe. The basic one. Here's a YouTube video made by Zoe and Jeff about their recipe, technique and book.

You can find the master recipe on the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes on The Splendid Table by clicking HERE. You can also visit the official Artisan Bread in Five Minutes Website by clicking HERE.

I have never ordered a book online. Till now. I ordered the cookbook from Chapters. Its going to be worth every cent. There are all sorts of options for this bread and technique. I'm going to try them all.

Did I mention we are on a diet? Even if I get one slice of this a day, its worth it!

Now, go forth and BAKE! I'd love know how you do with this incredible recipe!

Awww - I inspire Eileen!

I received this lovely award this morning from a new blog friend Eileen, who has a great blog happening herself. SUCH good photography. Thanks Eileen, I shall pay this forward right now - seeing as how it does not come with any work involved. I am SO BAD at sending these things out. You can visit Eileen by clicking HERE.

I'm going to pick three people who I've never awarded before.

BUNNY - anyone who can take a dead appliance and turn it into an RIP has caught my attention. Really, one day there was a framed pic of her dead dryer, with flowers on her blog. I almost lost it. But for all your wonderful designs and card ideas and HUMOUR. Thanks for brightening my day and inspiring me.

HELENA - I don't really know Helena, but I visit her blog now and again and she's always got something interesting. I'm always inspired by her artistic ideas. Thanks for sharing your ideas with us, and congrats on your pregnancy!

- I don't know Elizabeth either - but she inspires me. She's VERY talented with designing, photography and journalling, but the thing I most admire is her dedication to her family and marriage. Its always inspiring for me to see strong marriages like this. Thanks E!


  1. YUM! I just love fresh homemade bread! When we were kids, my mom would bake bread every once in awhile. It was one time when we were allowed to stay up later than our bed times - so we could have it fresh out of the oven. Nothing on earth is better than hot bread - YUMYUMYUMYUMYUM!!!!!!! Now I am going to have to check out your recipe!!!! It would g great with my chili!!!

  2. Mmmmm...I am imagining the heavenly smell is coming from your kitchen! Enjoy a slice for me! We are on a diet too. My son said the other night, "Mommy you are taking this diet thing way too far." Gotta love kids!

  3. You are such a sweetie! Thanks for your blog award! You totally made my day! God bless

  4. Ooooh ... thanks for the bread links. I'm itching to try this method! Can't wait to hear your opinion on the book!

  5. i can almost smell that bread now!! it looks and sounds DELICIOUS! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe too! i never made my own bread (i know, what's wrong with me? Lol) but i do LOVE to bake and may have to try it someday soon! have a WONDERFUL day! :D

  6. Good Afternoon Barb:)
    I agree..the smell is wonderful.:) I wish we had smell-a-vision.Oh..I can do better than that...taste-a-vision.LOL With nice fresh butter melted on that warm..fresh bread.mmmmm.:)
    I know how you feel about the dry spell in designing.I just went through that and finally got an idea.I was beginning to think my career was over.LOL Just take your time and when something comes to you ..I know it will be well worth the wait!:)


  7. OK that's it- I'm calling RANK- lol. You'll have to move here just so I can get some of this bread! Girlfriend you know I can't bake for SQUAT and looking at that one here reminds me of my OUMA making bread on the farm! ( Yup- who would have thought that I can actually milk a COW- hahahaha- but I can't bake bread!). DIET??- After my disaster at trying on my summer tops before I left- I'm right up there with you- lol. I nearly burst a seam or two Barb- was NASTY-;-)
    But still a way to go for summer to hit- so trying to get the winter comfort eating extra flab under control- oh help me-LOL

    Sending huge hugs

  8. yes it is awesome bread ...and Sarb you know just how to do it ...I loved it when you baked it for us ya ..(still crashed )


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