Bread, bread, bread

[Updated to add a bunch of stuff. Can't believe I forgot biscuits! Thanks, Piglet!]

Bread. I know some of you don’t do bread, but for us, it’s a staple, and it’s also a way to keep the hearth in this modern age. If there’s anything that speaks home more than fresh-baked bread with butter, don’t tell me about it, because I’m grooving on this here thought just now.

Mmmm, bread…

Okay, I’m back.

Right now, this baguette recipe is rising on my counter. I don’t remember the last time I made bread. Before I went back to school, I made it a few times a week, and we bought almost no bread. But I have a three-day weekend, and homework is light, so hey, bread! I’ll let you know how the baguettes go, but I wanted to think about which breads I still want to learn to make. A sort of boulangerie bucket list, if you will.

Until a few years ago, I could honestly say I’d never made good bread. Barely edible was about as good as it got. Practice really does help.

Here’s a list of breads I’ve learned to make in the last few years. I’m defining “bread” kind of broadly, to include things like crepes. Please do pipe up and add to my list. I love learning new breads, and I’ve probably forgotten some I’ve made. Please tell me your favorites! With links, even!

Things I’ve already made:

Plain sandwich breads, in white, wheat, rye, and other combinations (anadama, etc.)
No-knead crusty bread, in plain and wheat and rye
Focaccia
Gougères and cream puffs, which are essentially the same process
Pandora’s angel breads, in sweet and savory versions.
Deep-dish pizza dough (still working on getting a good thin crust. Ideas?)
The best burger buns ever, both plain and stuffed
Shortcakes (not sure if this is just a US usage)
Pancakes
Waffles

Things I really want to learn to make:

The aforementioned baguettes
Brioche
Popovers
Pita bread
Crackers
Injera (I’ve made two failed batches. Any injera experts out there?)
Biscuits (US usage) — mine are always flat and hard
Yorkshire pudding
Naan
English muffins

Things I haven’t tried, and may some day:

Croissants
Puff pastry

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8 thoughts on “Bread, bread, bread”

  1. I tried making injera a while back. I bought some tef flour, followed the recipe, allowed the dough to sour, then fried it according to the recipe. It tasted like dirt.

    I suspect that the souring didn’t go correctly. I’m told that adding a bit of yeast can perk it up to the point that it tastes like injera, not dirt.

    Another kind of bread you might want to try making is Anadama bread. There is a story behind it–the Gloucester fishermen used to return from the sea to corn meal mush and molasses, which got a little tired after a while. One of the fishermen, whose wife was named Anna, mixed the mush into bread dough and baked it, muttering “Anna, d*mn her!” and this bread recipe was born. I have not yet tried a yeast bread; it kind of scares me. But I’ll get around to it. Hope your baguettes do well.

    1. Insanely, the spambot thought this was spam. You WORK here. I need to figure that out.

      But anyway, back to injera: mine tasted… *bitter*, and never seemed sourdoughish. I love Anadama — it’s in my list already. But Piglet has reminded me to add biscuits and shortcakes!

      1. I like working here, SPAMbot or no!

        I wonder if using some of your sourdough starter in the injera batter might do the trick. Never too late to experiment…

  2. Oh, Serene, how I missed you! I know you are busy with school and I hope you are having a moment here an there to breathe:)
    My life has been turned upside down in the last month or two and I am still trying to keep my head above the surface. The worst is over and I can see the light looming in the distance, so future is smiling at me:)
    Making bread is like a therapy for me and just like you, I have managed to perfect my skills with time.
    I am going to borrow some of your recipes, but I’ll leave some of mine for you to try:)
    http://bibberche.com/2012/04/flaky-buttermilk-biscuits/ I am making the biscuits for breakfast tomorrow as my girls requested:)
    http://bibberche.com/2012/01/pogaca-ruzicara-rose-shaped-bread/
    Have a great weekend! Let’s stay in touch!
    Lana recently posted..Verbal Essences

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