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Baking even mediocre bread makes the house smell good and improves my mood, and this batch was a step up from mediocre. And eaten fresh, almost any bread is good. Eating too much though, is not good, so I make small batches.


I'm still not wanting to use a recipe. This time it was a dose of instant yeast in warm water with a little sugar and a glug of oil. When I was sure it was alive and burping, I stirred in a little salt, one egg, and a similar amount of plain yogurt. Then I slowly added enough bread flour to make a workable dough. I turned it out on the counter and kneaded it for about five minutes. Then I let it rest for an hour to roughly double. I discovered that if I set the burner to the very lowest setting, it creates just enough het to help the dough rise.

Punch it down, lightly work it. Divide into two and work into two small round loaves. I don't have a silicone mat yet (want!) so I line my ancient baking sheet with aluminum foil and then sprinkle it with masa harina. Normally I would have used corn meal, but I don't seem to have any right now. Gave the dough another half an hour to rest and rise as the over preheated to 450 degrees. I tossed a dash of plain water into the bottom of the oven when the dough went in, and again after ten minutes.

The bread took about fifteen or twenty minutes to get a nice brown top, and when I took it out I thumped the bottoms and they sounded right. I wrapped the little loaves in a cotton towel to rest a bit. After ten minutes, I pulled one out and sliced off a piece. The crust was very soft, softer than I really prefer, but it went with the very fine crumb of the bread. Oh, and the masa harina got very toasty in the oven and imparted its flavor to the bread. Interesting.


IMG_0349

I still have the second loaf to munch on tomorrow.

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