We eat a lot of bread at our house. Those of you who have been around us at all know this without a doubt. Andy eats 2 PB&J's everyday for lunch. EVERYDAY!! He maybe has something else 2x a year. He's been doing that for about 5 years now. Faye and Drew, and now Alex, are not much better. I try to mix it up a little and make different things for lunch, but well, PB&J's are easy and the kids love them! So, we go through probably 4 loaves of bread a week. I always feel like we're running to the store to buy bread, and I know it is loaded up with weird things I'd rather not be eating or feeding to the kids. Ever read the ingredients on your bread? There is some scary stuff in there sometimes! Most bread also contains milk, so we're very limited to what brand we can buy.
So I'll make homemade bread for us to eat. Yeah right!! But I really am going to try to make at least a few loaves each week of homemade bread. Its really not that hard to do, it just takes a little time, and while I don't have a lot of time, I do have a little more now that the kids are in school.
I've made bread before, but never really spent much time reading about how to make it. I really wanted a sandwich bread for the kids to eat their PB&J's. I make buns frequently, as well as Italian or french bread, or things like banana bread and zucchini bread, but never sandwich bread. As it turns out I needed a different size pan. We have the standard 9x5 loaf pan, but that is too big and the bread will not be tall enough. For tall sandwich bread I had to buy an 8 1/2 by 4 loaf pan or something like that. Who knew that a pan just a tad smaller could make such a huge difference? I also learned how to shape it into a loaf - I really had no idea there was such a thing. Normally I would just shove the dough into the pan and bake it.
My 1st attempt turned out really well. There is really nothing like homemade bread. Andy and the kids agreed and ate almost a whole loaf at once. The recipe I tried made two loaves, so we sliced up the other one today and had sandwiches for lunch. It was really really good. It is white bread, which is the easiest to make. I will try to work in some whole wheat white or oat or soy flour to make it a little more nutritious, but that makes it a little trickier!