As I sit at my computer to write another post, my house smells so good. No, I haven’t been cleaning! (grin) It’s because I am making homemade bread! It’s been a secret passion of mine for quite some time (two years, to be exact) to begin making our own bread. And I began…yesterday!
I have been researching online how to make my own bread and have found lots of information. I began by making hamburger buns (see my “Homemade Hamburger Buns” post from March 2010). I have also recently found a recipe showing how to make hot dog buns. I have not tried that yet, but I plan to sometime soon.
The Lord has put some incredibly wise women in my life who have shared with me their knowledge of nutrition. When Logan was around two (about six years ago), I attended a health and nutrition class at my church. My eyes were opened to the lack of nutrition in fast and convenience foods, refined flours and sugars, artificial flavors and colors, high fructose corn syrup, and preservatives. These things are bad for you…they are man made. The best way to eat is how God intended, with real living foods: vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, lean meats, wild salmon, etc.
I have become a label reader…if I cannot pronounce an ingredient or if an ingredient contains any kind of a number (red dye #40), that product goes right back on the shelf. I am teaching my kids along the way, too. At the grocery store one day, we looked at a box of cereal that claimed to have an incredible amount of fiber and nutrition, but when we turned the box over to look at the ingredients, it was full of sugar and preservatives! How deceiving advertising can be!
Over New Year’s weekend, my mother gave me my Dad’s old bread machine. After I brought it home, I dusted it off, read the manual, and made a trial loaf of “Honey Banana Whole Wheat Bread.” I used all natural, unbleached whole wheat flour which I purchased at the store. My goal is to buy my own grain and grind it myself into flour to use in my breads. All store-bought flours have had the germ removed. The germ is the part that contains the nutritious oils. Removing this part allows the flour to sit for months on a grocery store shelf without going rancid. Grain flours, in general, quickly lose vitamins and minerals as soon as they are ground, so fresh bread is best. The benefits of homemade bread are numerous, including curing everything from warts to headaches and promotion of colon health.
The first loaf of bread was a success and so easy! I simply added all my ingredients (wet first) to the bread machine, and it did all the work: mixing, kneading, and baking! Lindsay made herself a peanut butter and creamed honey sandwich on the Honey Banana Whole Wheat Bread today for lunch. She ate every bit of it, even the crust! That tells me a lot!
Bread making is a personal passion for me, and it will be a process as I learn how to do this and experiment on my family with different recipes. I cannot promise I will never have store-bought bread in my house again, but I can’t wait to try making all of our bread.