Make Bread to Save Dough
By Lisa Dillon
I look at the price of one loaf of bread on Molokai — over $4 — and cringe. I know if I cannot afford it, many others cannot. But for the same amount of money, you can make four loaves of your own bread. My great grandmother taught me to make bread and share the knowledge. I have passed on her tradition to my family and friends. I’d like to share this recipe for basic bread you can bake at home and save your family money, as well as create your own tradition with your family and friends. Nothing tastes better than homemade bread, and it’s easy and fun and doesn’t take too much time.
Basic Bread Recipe
Makes up to six loaves, depending your shape and pans.
Approx. 6 cups flour — plain is fine, though bread flour is better and cheaper
4 cups water
3 packs yeast or measured equivalent
2 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
3 Tablespoons salt
2 Tablespoons oil
Pie pan, cookie sheet or loaf pans
Heat water to hotter than bath water (110 to 115 degrees.) In a large bowl or pot, add water and sugar, and stir in yeast. Let stand and watch for yeast to “bloom” — this takes a few minutes and is fun for kids to watch. Add salt, oil and just enough flour to make like pancake batter. Let rise in a draft-free place until doubles in size, or about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Stir down and let rest for 10 minutes. Then stir in flour — about 2 to 2 1/2 cups — with the back of a large spoon, or enough flour to make a stiff dough. You should have about 1 1/2 cup flour left. Put enough flour to the table and knead the dough for approximately 8 to 10 minutes, adding in flour when sticky. Kneading is easy and good fun. Start with your dough on the floured table right in front of you. With the heal of your hand, push on the dough, fold it, then turn it. Keep folding and turning, adding flour lightly until the dough is smooth.
With a sharp knife, cut the dough into pieces for your loaves, and let dough rest 10 minutes. Grease your pans well with oil, cooking spray, shortening butter or margarine. The dough will be soft so work lightly and shape your loaves by rolling and tucking under the ends. Place in pans and let rise till double approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees (should be hot when you put bread in) and bake approximately 35 to 45 minutes. You can tell it’s done when it is nicely brown ad sounds hollow when thumped. Wait 10 minutes for bread to cool before slicing.
I hope you enjoy, and make bread-making a tradition you share with your friends and family. These are times where every penny counts more than ever, and I encourage you to share recipes and household tips to save money.