There's this nostalgia that I get whenever I'm in the process of making bread. During the holidays, Grandma Boyd would always get up early around 6 and start getting the bread ready for the family. I would always wake up and just imagine her in her whimsical kitchen, surrounded by her plates that she collected from her travels. As an adult, with Grandma not in the right condition to make bread, I've somewhat took it upon myself myself to learn and to craft bread. I've always connected myself with tradition ( especially around Christmas ). Even when I made Grandma Gross's blueberry kolachy ( I need to make that soon ) you still have to use yeast. I love when people say that bread is really hard to make. Honestly, all you need is to feel the water and patience. Grandma Boyd taught me this tip for using yeast:
" When you use yeast, get your ingredients ready. First, turn your faucet on and let it run. When the water gets to the point of bath water but not hurtful to the touch. It should be ready."-Grandma Boyd
I remember as a kid sitting with my hand under the water with Gram figuring out my touch to the temperature of water. It's the little tips and tricks that stick with you that makes the act of cooking/baking beautiful. And if someone made a candle that smelled like rising yeast, I'd buy a lifetime supply.
With always buying and looking at cookbooks, I always look for the bread recipes. With all of the recipes that I've tested. I've found the easiest recipe for beginners. Many bread recipes are have a plethora of ingredients. Here are a few cook books that have great/easy bread recipes that I use on a weekly basis-
- The Kinfolk Table - Breakfast Bread (This is what I've been using lately)
- The Kinfolk Table - Vera's Buns
- The Year of Cozy- Biscuit Recipe
If you want something a little more advanced and adventurous, I suggest looking into the Tartine Bread book series. I have a copy in my library and I always loved looking at the different grains that you can get to make to put into your bread.