Friday, August 17, 2012

Yummy Homemade Bread

I found this from Food Storage Made Easy newsletter.  I love their website!  They found it from the Deals to Meal's blog.  I decided to try out the recipe and it's the best homemade bread I've ever had!  Here's the recipe:

Emilie's Whole Wheat Bread

Makes 4 8/4 inch loaves.

7 c. whole wheat flour (grind your own if you have a wheat grinder)
2/3 c. vital wheat gluten
2 1/2 T. instant yeast

5 c. hot water (120-130 F)

2 T. salt
2/3 c. oil
2/3 c. honey or 1 c. sugar (I like honey the best!)
2 1/2 T. bottled lemon juice

5 c. whole wheat flour

Mix together the first three ingredients in your mixer with a dough hook. (I don't have an electric mixer so I just used a regular wooden spoon and a bowl for the entire process and it turned out just fine) Add water all at once and mix for 1 minute; cover and let rest for 10 minutes (this is called sponging). Add salt, oil, honey or sugar, and lemon juice and beat for 1 minute. Add last flour, 1 cup at a time, beating between each cup. Beat for about 6-10 minutes until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. This makes very soft dough.

Pre-heat oven for 1 minute to lukewarm and turn off. Turn dough onto oiled counter top (I usually skip this step because I don't really see the point); divide, shape into loaves place in oiled bread pans. I also sprinkle cornmeal into the pans because just oiling alone wasn't enough to keep the bread from sticking. Let rise in warm oven for 10-15 minutes until dough reaches top of pan. Do not remove bread from oven; turn oven to 350 F and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on racks. This recipe can be halved to make 2 loaves.

Our bread pans are slightly larger so we make 3 large loaves.  This bread comes out so moist and it stays moist!  It's definitely worth a try!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Pressure Cooker Brown Rice

I love brown rice!  I love its nutty warm flavor.  And besides being so good for me it fills me up really quickly and keeps me from overeating! YUM!  The downside is how long it takes to cook this stuff.  Unless you're using your pressure cooker!  This is so simple I don't know why I haven't tried it before!

I found this new way to cook brown rice today on Vegan Coach's website.  I tried out her chewy rice method, and it was the best rice I've ever had!

It used to be that my family would always cringe when they would hear that I was making brown rice. Brown rice is a lot like oatmeal. With the right recipe you can have some amazing food, but if you don't know what you're doing with the stuff it tastes like you're eating soggy cardboard.  Over the past year I've been trying to perfect my method.  I've improved some, by not stirring during cooking and keeping my cooking time EXACTLY right, but it was never this good before.

So I can tell you're dying to find out how this works right?

Here's what you do:

Heat up your pressure cooker and brown the rice to bring out the flavor.  This step is very important.  I've never done it before and the flavor difference is huge!  Anyway, you then add boiling water, salt, and whatever spices you want use.  I decided to put in several dashes of thyme and garlic powder, and a few bay leaves.  Put the lid on and turn the heat all the way up to get your pressure cooker to do its thing.  Once its at high pressure drop the heat down just enough to maintain pressure.   Now is the time to set your timer to about 20 minutes.  After your buzzer goes off turn off the heat and let the pressure come down to the point to where you can open the pot, and TA DA!  Your rice is done!

Here are the measurements that I used for the chewier rice:

2 1/2 cups of rice
5 cups of water.

If you want chewier rice you are supposed to use less water and less cooking time.  If you want stickier rice you should use more water and more cooking time.