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Sunday, July 12, 2015

My very first...Homemade Italian Bread !!

Baking this bread... was like a dream come true!! I was intimidated by the thought of baking my own bread. I worried about the time it will consume, the hard kneading it might take, especially since I don't have a bread machine. Was worried that the texture might not come out as 'fluffy' as the chemical laden store bought breads have manipulated our tastes and perception of texture.

But finally....I made up my mind one fine day and gave it a try!!! And let me tell you...it wasn't a daunting task...nor did it need lots of kneading..and the texture was 'fluffy' but not artificial sponge like! I would say..it did take up some time...but it was mostly for the yeast to rise and the baking time.
All in all..everyone loved the Home baked... tasty... no artificial anything bread!!!


2 cups warm water
1.5 cups Whole wheat flour
1.5 cups (plus some extra) All purpose flour
1 pkg or 2.5 tsp active dry yeast
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Sesame seeds
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt


1) To 1 cup warm water, add sugar and yeast. Keep aside for 10 mins
2) Sieve together both flours and salt. Add to the yeast and knead gently. Add warm water as needed to form a moist and soft dough.

3) Cover with a cloth and keep in a warm place for 30 mins to rise

4) After 30 mins, with oiled hands, pat down the dough.Knead into a ball.Cover again and let it rise again for 30 mins.
Again after 30 mins pat down, knead, cover and let it rise. (So total rising time will be around 1 hour and 30 mins)

5) Pre heat oven to 375 F

6) Place wax paper on a large cookie sheet. Knead the dough gently and form into a log. Pat with sesame seeds and make diagonal marks with a knife.Brush with olive oil.

7) Place the bread in the pre heated oven and bake at 375 F for 35-40 mins. If you knock on the bread, you should hear a 'hollow' sound and the bread should have a golden brown color.

8) Let it cool  for 15-20 mins before slicing with a bread knife.

9) Enjoy the bread with your favorite soup or as toasted or as Bruschetta with your favorite topping!

Brush the sliced bread with olive oil and crushed garlic. Toast in the oven for few minutes (optional) Top with sliced cherry tomatoes, chopped onions, basil, salt and pepper and grated cheese. You can drizzle the toast with balsamic vinegar if you like! Munch crunnnch...yummm!