Sunday, November 1, 2009

Fresh Bread!

I was never much of a baker. I suppose it was being brought up amongst a hungry bunch of Italians, that we just didn't have the "time" to bake fresh bread; the four-hour long process would not fly in my home. However, now that I have grown up a bit and no longer live in a home full of ravenous Italian men, I have more patience and a deep passion for the beautiful art that is baking.

In the recent months I have been both inspired and enlightened to start baking bread. My adorable friend, Alyssa, has a passion for baking both bread and pastries, and frankly, far more knowledge in that area of the culinary world than I thought possible for such a little person :) Despite her size (hehe sooo cute), the girl can bake a mean loaf of french bread by hand! I am amazed! So, we followed a recipe from All Recipes and got to it.

Here is the recipe we used:

As we don't have the luxury of having a bread mixer here in this small NYC apartment, everything was made my hand. By the end of the session our arms were burning like hell from mixing the dough and my cheeks were throbbing from laughing so hard. If I had known that baking homemade bread could be so fun I would have done this years ago!

Here are some photos of my first loaf of homemade french bread:

Perfect dough consistency.... Why make one when you can make two?!

To spice up our bread a little bit, we brushed it with egg whites and rolled it in fresh rosemary, garlic and pepper flakes. Honestly, what could possibly be better? A little olive oil for dipping and you are SET!

Now that I have a basic foundation of knowledge for baking, I will be back soon enough with more where this came from. My new found love for baking could get dangerous... MUhaha!

Love and freshly baked goods,