The more Megan and I cooked at home, the more I wondered to myself what was possible. At my most naive, I searched online one morning for “pancakes from scratch”, and my mind was soon blown. For years, I had been buying boxed flour and baking soda.
At first, I felt cheated, but soon thereafter, I felt empowered. Armed with the Internet and a kitchen scale, I set out to truly learn some tasty recipes that we could con cot from the bare essentials. What else do we buy packaged that we can make from scratch? Turns out, pretty much everything. I’m happy to say that for almost the past four months Megan and I haven’t purchased a basic loaf of bread from the grocery store.
I’ll admit, the basis of this recipe came from Ratio, but I’ve put some slight variations onto it, and it’s become a very flexible dough for us, one that we find ourselves using for loaves, dinner rolls, and pizza.
20-30g lemon juice
450g bread flour (we use King Arthurs)
- Let the yeast sit in the water until it’s been activated, and you’ve got a tan-milk-ish color, then add the salt, sugar, and lemon juice.
- Mix in the flour thoroughly. I let my dough hook run for about 5 minutes with this, while I use a spatula to scrape the insides of the bowl, ensuring everything mixes. If things start getting a little too sticky, I’ll sprinkle some flour to dry it up a little bit.
- After the mixing is done, take the lump of dough out and sprinkle more flour on it, until the dough can be handled without sticking to your hands.
- Knead the dough for a little bit longer, and then let it rest in a bowl or on the counter for 2-4 hours, depending on the temperature of the room.
- When the dough has doubled in size, take it out of it’s container, and shape it into the loaf that you want, and place it on a thoroughly floured surface to rise for another hour or so.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees, preferably with a baking stone inside.
- Cook the bread at 450 for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 for another 15 minutes.
- Take the bread out, and let it coli for about 30-45 minute before you serve. The gluten needs time to rest, and the flavors are still not fully formed yet.
For the nice ridges of the dough, I stole a trick that I’ve seen sushi chefs do, and wet a bread knife thoroughly before I make the cuts, rewetting it for each cut.
A simple recipe, but it has been our go to for some time now. I intend on buying some oatmeal flour in bulk soon, and seeing what we can do with that.