Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Brother's Bread

I'm feeling pretty poopy about food these days. I mentioned in my last post that I've had to avoid certain foods because of interstitial cystitis, and yesterday, my doctor called me with more good news -- my cholesterol is too high. Whoopee! More diet modifications!

I'm going to try to embrace the foods I can have instead of moping about those I can't have, and hopefully I'll still be able to share with you many yummy recipes (after all, my family still has to eat)! This bread recipe is one I will still be able to enjoy. In fact -- we're having it for dinner tonight. It's a basic dinner white bread, but the extra long bake time, coupled with the vinegar (I think!) gives it a really yummy crust. You don't taste the vinegar, however, it's just a really tasty, dense, white bread.

The recipe comes from Jesuit Brother Rick Curry by way of the Food Network. It was published in The Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking -- an awesome bread cookbook. I halve the recipe to make one loaf, and my remarks are, as usual, in italics.

Brother's Bread

1 T. active dry yeast
2 1/4 c. warm water
1 1/2 T. salt
1 T. sugar
6 to 7 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
White distilled vinegar

In a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook combine the yeast and water, mixing slowly until yeast is dissolved. Stir in salt and sugar. Mix well. Set aside for 5 minutes.
Beat for 5 minutes, gradually adding flour until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Turn out on a lightly floured surface. Knead for 8 to 10 minutes, until dough is smooth and elastic, adding flour as necessary to prevent stickiness (or use dough hook in mixer for about 5 minutes).
Lightly oil a large bowl. Place dough in bowl and turn to coat on all sides. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours. Alternatively, cover with plastic wrap and let rise slowly in the refrigerator for 10 to 12 hours or overnight. (Both times I've made this the first rise was kind of slow -- give it time.)
Line a baking sheet with kitchen parchment or sprinkle with cornmeal.
Punch down the dough. Divide in half, shape into 2 round loaves, and place on the baking sheet. Carve an X in the top of the loaf and spray with vinegar (I brushed it on with a pastry brush). Place in a cold oven and turn the oven on to 400 degrees F for 45 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool.

Printer Version



Jamie said...

Looks delicious! I just put our home made bread to rise by the oven...maybe next time I will try this one!

I'm sorry about your high cholesterol. Have you tried that oatmeal challenge? I think Cheerios is supposed to work too, eat them for a month and supposedly your cholesterol will go down.

scmom (Barbara) said...

Thanks, Jamie. I'm trying oatmeal for breakfast and Cheerios for dessert (bleh!). I'm pretty sure I won't be able to keep it up for long, though. I noticed yesterday on the Cheerios box that it says "eat a bowl of Cheerios a day, in addition to a reduced-calorie, low-fat diet." Puh! So much for the magic of Cheerios! I seem to remember that the FDA busted them on their claim of just eating Cheerios to bring down your cholesterol. I'm afraid this is going to be a whole-diet overhaul!

Anonymous said...

am so sorry Barb. Diet changes are so hard. We are going through them too. Ugh. Check out the magazine Clean Eating. You have to pick up some odd ingredients sometimes but so far we have been pleasantly surprised by the recipes.

My yeast, water, and sugar are doing their magic now! I will try the vinegar and see what happens, lol. If my kids get mad I will just blame you. ;)

Crafty P said...

Sorry about the diet changes- that is rough especially during December. I loved Eating Well when I subscribed. I try and pick it up whenever I see it at Half Price books.

I remember buying yeast the other day to give this a try. And I haven't yet. Maybe this weekend? I really really really want to start making more bread. We just consume so much of it and I hate buying the non-nutritive white bread at the store- someone here insists upon it! (hint: it's NOT me).

So, maybe I'll give Brother's Bread a go! Glad I waited for your notes, too!

marcie melancon said...

I am anxious to see what menu ideas you come up with. I also have elevated cholesterol and I cannot take any of the meds used to treat it. So, now, it's diet and exercise. I have been looking for ideas for, I will be keeping my eye on your blog.