One of the best things I’ve done for my family, in terms of our health and our budget, is learn how to make breads. I’ve had some screw-ups along the way, and I admit that I almost always take a shortcut, and use my bread machine to do the kneading, but I do know how to knead dough by hand, and sometimes, if I’m not pressed for time, I do this just for the simple pleasure of it.
I can occasionally purchase bread for less than it costs to make it (I can’t pass up 88 cents for a 20-ounce whole-wheat loaf), but I know that if there are weeks when I can’t find a good sale price on bread, I can always make it at home. I estimate that a loaf of my homemade bread costs around 95 cents, and it’s very nutritious, and tastes wonderful!
In the last 5 years or so, I’ve mastered:
Honey wheat bread
Pizza dough (the trick to a perfect, crispy crust is to bake the dough on the lowest oven rack, at a fairly high temperature (425-450).
Cinnamon roll dough
and now…sandwich rolls.
The first time I made sandwich rolls, it was because I wanted to make homemade sloppy joes, with sweet potato fries, for dinner, but I didn’t have any buns, and getting out of the house seemed impossible that day (see Wednesday’s post). I was kind of disappointed in how they turned out, so I played around with the recipe a bit (as I always do), and the next time I made them they were wonderful! My family loved my version, and this recipe has quickly become a favorite on my recipe blog.
(Can you tell that I really like ketchup?)
If you’d like to try your hand at making sandwich rolls, here’s my recipe:
1 1/3 cups warm water
2 tablespoons vegetable, canola, or olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons non-fat, dry milk powder
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons active, dry yeast (1 packet)
1. Put ingredients in bread machine pan in the order given and set on dough cycle. When cycle finishes, turn out onto a floured board and punch down. Knead 4 or 5 times, adding a little more flour if necessary to keep dough from sticking.
2. Cover dough with a clean dishcloth and let rest for about 30 minutes. Lightly grease a large baking sheet (or use a Silpat. This is what I prefer when baking). Press dough into a circle and cut into 8 even wedges (about 4 ounces each). Form each wedge into a ball then flatten into a smooth and fairly even circle.
3. Place each circle on the baking sheet and let rest for about 20 minutes, or until doubled in size. Bake in preheated 375-degree oven for about 18 minutes, or until nicely browned. Makes 8 large buns.
If you don’t have a bread machine, you can make these rolls the traditional way, using these instructions:
1. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add oil, and stir well. Mix in all other dry ingredients, except all-purpose flour. Work all-purpose flour in gradually. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead for at least 10 to 15 minutes. When dough is smooth and elastic, place it in a well oiled bowl. Turn it several times in the bowl to coat the surface of the dough, and cover with a damp cloth. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
2. Punch down the dough. Divide and shape it into circles, as instructed above.
3. Place each circle on a baking sheet and let rest for about 20 minutes, or until doubled in size. Bake in preheated 375-degree oven for about 18 minutes, or until nicely browned. Makes 8 large buns.
I hope you enjoy these. Have a great weekend everybody!
Copyright 2011, Want What You Have