Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Making Bread

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Bread is something that I decided I needed to stop buying a while ago.  It's not terrible in comparison to a lot of other processed foods being sold, but it's not great, especially when my picky eaters subsist largely on peanut butter sandwiches.  I've had a bread machine for almost 11 years that I've used on and off.  Recently it's been getting a good workout, making a 2 pound loaf every other day!  Sadly, the post that comes up through the bottom of the pan rusted off and it won't work anymore.

My friend Linnae found a bread machine for $3 at the thrift store, and it looked great!  She gave it to me, even brought it over to my house Monday.  I put the bread machine on top of the stove and pushed it back toward the back.  What I didn't know was that I had bumped the knob to turn on the burner the machine was sitting on - just to the very lowest setting.  So the entire time you were all here (Linnae, Erin, Jeri, Linda!!!) that burner was heating up and starting to very slowly melt the plastic casing on the bottom of the machine!!! After they left, Dee came over, and that's when I started smelling the burning plastic.  Uh oh.  (Daniel's new FAVORITE phrase, and after this story you should not be surprised as to why or that he hears it often.)  I started poking around looking for the smell, and finally picked up the new bread machine, that I had seriously not even had long enough to bake a loaf of bread, with a melted heap of plastic on the burner and giant hole in the bottom of the casing.  Ugh.

I thankfully didn't burn down the house.  But killing two bread machines in a week seems excessive, really.

So I decided to try something with cooking that I've avoided for a very long time: homemade wheat bread by hand.  NO MACHINE!?  It wasn't too bad.  I did cheat and let the mixer do the majority of the kneading for me, so it wasn't entirely by hand, but it took a whole lot of work and attention.  I'm not sure if I'm going to keep doing it this way or not.  The loaves came out perfectly though and I am pretty proud that I finally conquered the thing I have been so intimidated to try for so many years.  


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