1 Hour French Bread

This was an interesting pin that I found a while back, and sadly, it’s been sitting on my bread board for a long time. We were having pasta two nights ago and my kids are so much more amenable to eating pasta when there is bread. I made the decision to try this. It’s come up before on my blog, I love bread a lot!
I’ve made banana bread, rosemary bread, beer bread, and that doesn’t even begin to cover the breadsticks and biscuits I’ve made. I guess you can tell I like bread, yes? Maybe it’s the French in me…..
Your ingredients will be
•2 1/2 cups warm water (borderline hot)
•2 tbsp yeast
•2 tbsp sugar
•1 tsp salt
•3 tbsp oil
•5 1/2 – 6 cups of flour
You’re going to start by putting your water in a bowl and sprinkle the yeast and sugar on top. Let that sit for about 5 minutes until it bubbles, like so:

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Next up, stir in the salt, oil and flour. Knead it together, adding flour as kneaded (haha), until it pulls away from the edge of the bowl. It’ll look a little like this:

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Best tip from here, again taken from the original blog, was to heat a cup of water in the microwave for 2 minutes. Afterwards, cover your bowl with a damp towel and place in the microwave for about 15 minutes. It’ll rise faster, to look like this:

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From here, you form it into 2 loaves. In a moment of wisdom, I decided the dough was only enough for one loaf. 5 minutes into baking time, I split it. Trust me, make 2 loaves! Place the loaves on a greased cookie sheet for baking. Slice some cuts in the top of the bread also. Like so:

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Here’s where I cut them during bake time:

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They looked a little stupid, but oh well! Let your bread sit and breathe a bit while your oven heats up to 375°. After your oven is up to temp, bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown.

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The bread was amazing! Especially with my homemade dipping oil!

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It was crunchy on the outside, warm and soft on the inside. In essence, perfect! Happy baking all!

Homemade Chocolate Cake

Homemade Chocolate Cake

I love making cakes. My mom recently passed her cake pan collection on to me. Dad’s in the military so she got a little tired of carting the pans all over the country, that and she doesn’t make as many cakes as she used to.
After years of trying to show me how to decorate cakes, it all coalesced the day of Arthur’s second birthday and I made him a gorgeous Scooby Doo cake!
I’ve been thinking for a while that I would like to become that mom that makes things from scratch. Cake, brownies, other yummy desserts. Except cookies! Sadly, I’ve learned that Tony makes much better chocolate chip cookies than I ever do. *sigh*
This recipe turned out really yummy, if a little soupy. My thoughts to improve on this, a slightly longer cooktime and I’m going to try Hershey’s Cocoa instead of Nestle Quik.
1/4 cup cocoa (as stated earlier, I used Nestle Quik, mainly because I had it in the house, even though the pictures from the site showed Hershey’s Cocoa)
1 cup of butter or margarine (2 sticks)
1 cup water
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup buttermilk (I used regular milk because my kitchen isn’t fancy enough to run to buttermilk)
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat your oven to 400*. Original site said 9×13 pan, but I used my 2 round pans.
Mix together the butter, sugar and cocoa. Once it’s well combined and gently boiling, remove from heat.
Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
In another bowl stir together the buttermilk (in my case milk), water and eggs.
Once the cocoa mixture is cool combine all the ingredients in the large mixing bowl. Pour into the baking pan and bake 25 minutes until the cake is done. I’ll be going a little longer next time, this may have been because of my pan size, but I’m willing to experiment!
Allow the cake to cool and then cover with icing. Normally I make my own icing, but as I used this recipe to do my Kit-Kat Cake, check that out at https://superstevied.wordpress.com/2013/04/27/cute-cake/ , and I didn’t need a full batch. I’ll admit it, I used store bought!
I’d definitely recommend giving this a try, just be smart like I was, and try this as a just because cake. You don’t want to risk your kid’s birthday cake being a little soupy!
Happy baking!
Original recipe is from http://groundbeefbudget.com/2012/11/homemade-chocolate-cake/
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