Let me share a story with you about breadsticks...
We were young, thin, and energetic, and we went to dinner at Olive Garden. That's where you go when you live in Rexburg, Idaho. That or Wingers. Or Jack in the Crack.
I remember being so nervous and thinking, "Ok I'll only eat one breadstick, because if I eat more than one he's going to thing I'm this out of control pig right?..." We sat down to order, and of coarse I asked for the soup and salad like a lady. Then, came my husband (BF). He ordered this seafood Alfredo pasta with a side of alfredo sauce and extra breadsticks.
No making out tonight.
Our meal was brought out to us, and we casually began to eat, flirt, and eat. I remember sitting there watching him pound bread stick after bread stick, as he dipped each bite into a bowl of warm alfredo sauce. "Another basket sir?", said the waiter. "Why yes, thank you!", said the boyfriend.
SIX baskets later, he was done.
Six baskets of bread, three extra servings of alfredo sauce, one seafood alfredo, and the most garlicky sea food breath one could ever imagine.
Want to know the worst part of the whole story...He weighs like 140 pounds. Feel free to shout at the screen, because IT'S JUST NOT FAIR!
To this day, he is still the same way. Anything he loves food wise, he goes crazy. I have to buy it or make it in bulk, because quickly it will be gone. Especially homemade bread. I usually reserve a loaf just for him, because late at night I'll hear, "Babe? Will you toast me some bread with butter and honey? Oh, and could you get me a glass of chocolate milk too?"
So far, I've been making THIS homemade bread from I Heart Nap Time, and it's worked perfectly every time! Our family loves it! Obviously this is a healthy lifestyle blog, and the recipe calls for butter, white flour, and a little sugar, which might contradict someone's idea of "healthy." But I've always felt that making something from scratch in your own kitchen is always better than buying it at a grocery store, so I'm perfectly fine with making the bread with the ingredients that the recipe calls for.
BUT, I love a challenge, and I decided to see if I could up the nutrients a little and make it a little more "wholesome."
I was worried that the ingredients I added would completely mess up the bread, but it came out beautifully! I know that baking bread is a scary thing, but i've learned that practice makes perfect. I've finally learned how to proof yeast after years of failing. Honestly it was all trial and error, and sadly lots of errors. Play around with water temperatures, and make sure that the water is warm enough to wear you can stick your finger in it for a few seconds without it being too hot.
As for the bread rising, I've learned that the place it rises is crucial.
Since it's 110 where I live, (Jealous?), I open the window and place the bread/yeast on a chair next to the door. It worked perfectly! (I just leave the door open long enough until my husband notices I'm letting out all of the cool air...)
And besides, who doesn't love to bake bread in a hot oven when it's 110 outside?!
Am I right, or what?!
- 2 c. warm water
- 2 1/2 tsp. yeast
- 1/2 TB. sugar
- 1/4 c. melted coconut oil
- 1 TB. salt
- 1/4 c. coconut sugar-or organic sugar
- 1/3 c. evaporated milk
- 5-7 c. bread flour
- 4 TB. ground flax seeds
- 3 TB. chia seeds
- 4 TB. quinoa flour
- 4 TB. oat flour
- 1 TB. melted coconut oil
- In a small bowl whisk together yeast and sugar. Add warm water over the top and whisk for a couple of seconds Set aside for 15-20 minutes until the yeast rises and become bubbly and frothy. (Place this mixture next to a warm area, such as by a window with sunlight.)
- In a mixing bowl fitted with a stand mixer, add the oil, salt, sugar, and milk. Whisk together. Then add the yeast mixture and whisk together.
- Attach the bread hook to the stand mixer. Slowly add in 3 cups of the bread flour, kneading until incorporated.
- Next add in the flax seeds, chia seeds, quinoa flour, and oat flour. Knead, until incorporated.
- Then, using 1/2 c. measurements, slowly add in flour until the dough is somewhat sticky, but doesn't stick to your fingers.
- Remove the dough from the bowl, knead a little if needed. Form dough into a bowl, coat with the 1 TB. melted coconut oil.
- Place the dough into a bowl, cover with a light towel, and place in a warm area.
- Allow the dough to double in size, about an hour and a half.
- Punch the dough down after its doubled.
- Knead the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cut the dough in half.
- Rough each dough into a rectangle, then roll it up into a loaf.
- Spray a bread pan with cooking oil, place the loaf into the pan, cover with a light towel, and let the dough rise until it's come about the top of the pan.
- Bake in a 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.
- Top with coconut oil.
I also made little rolls out of the loaf, and they turned out great for lunch sandwiches!
So now that my husband turned 30 this year, I told him all of those breadsticks and other food he loves is going to eventually catch up to him...And then he will come running to me saying, "Oh babe! You were so right! Please help me to eat healthier! I love you I love you I love you!! "...
Any day now...Any day...