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The past two years have been all about adjusting to motherhood and finding my way through it via craft. The out pouring of this came in the form of my blog Aunty Mum. Now I'm finally finding my feet, the children are growing, I'm getting some independence and my interests are morphing . . . into cooking. Join me in exploring creativity in many forms, food, fabric, frowns and laughter.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Breadmaker or Bread Maker?

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I’ve been having dilemmas lately over bread. I have a bit of a conscience that my family should be eating foods that are low in preservatives and high in “my-mum-made-this-goodness”. As summer is here we’re consuming lots of broccoli, cabbage and other delicious green things from right out of our garden. But bread is something that’s just a bit scary.

I have a bread maker and have bought pre-packaged bread mixes that work well, but do I really know what all those numbers mean? Nope. I’ve tried using the bread maker to make bread from the base ingredients without much success. And, my children aren’t fond of hard, crusty bread either.

So when I found a recipe in the Watties Children’s Cookbook for pizza bread I was pleased to see it was simple and only hoped it would work well. Work well it did and I use it for all sorts of things.

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So inspired were my family that we even fired up the pizza oven at my parents place. Yum! These pizzas were delicious. And the smoky flavour was divine.

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I had my work cut out for me keeping my assistant chef in line and up to speed, but we got there in the end.

I use the recipe for calzone pizzas too, which has become a favourite “quick” dinner in our house lately.

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But the real test came when I decided to use the recipe for buns so we could have mini burgers or sliders as they’re known on all the cheffy programmes on the telly. They were a hit and were all devoured that evening (there were five kids in the house that night so we were gluttons).

The recipe? Simple.

Dissolve 2 teaspoons of yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar in tepid water for about 5-10 minutes.

Meanwhile mix 2 and a half cups of high grade flour in a bowl, add salt and make a well in the middle. Once the yeast is activated, pour into flour with 1 tablespoon of oil and mix to form a dough. If it’s too wet, add a little more flour, too dry add a little more water.

You’ll need to get your muscles out, dust down your bench top with some flour and get kneading for about ten minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl and stand (somewhere warm) for about an hour or until the dough is about twice it’s size. (When the weather is cold I heat a metal bowl in the oven briefly and then stand it on a towel to keep the heat in while the dough rises.)

When the dough is ready, give it a punch to push the air out of it. If you’re using the dough for bread, let it rise again, but for pizzas just roll it out, top it and cook for about 15 minutes in a moderate oven. Yummo!

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