Thursday, January 31, 2008

~My french bread recipe, and other happenings.~

~For a long time I've wanted/NEEDED a piece of kitchen furniture to go in between my stove and refrigerator, but as you can see I didn't have a lot of room, so we couldn't seem to find one that was narrow enough to fit that space. So, last Aug. I used these wooden crates to store things until I could find something else.~
~My parents last day here in Colombia, Moma and I were in a store and I had measured to see how wide a piece of furniture would need to be to fit in my kitchen, and had the measurements with me. We went around measuring piece of furniture after piece of furniture and everything was too wide, and quite spendy! So we decided that we couldn't find anything in that store and went to the front to check out, and there sat this piece of furniture near the info desk and I measured it and knew that it would just fit, and it was a good price too. So, I bought it, and we came home with it. Little did I know that after trying to work in my small kitchen (with little counter space) for 2 1/2 weeks my Moma was convinced I NEEDED another piece of furniture too, and she and Daddy had planned to buy that piece of furniture if we could find the right thing. When we got home with it, Daddy gave Phillip the money to pay for that furniture....THANKS Daddy and Moma, I LOVE it! Where the LARGE Papaya is sitting, I have just enough room to mix up a recipe using my mixer, so that makes me HAPPY!~
~This past Monday we started school. Our girls are working HARD, doing 2 days of school each day, for we only have a few weeks left before we head back to the USA to have our baby. =) During our school day we took a picnic lunch to the park near our home and had a nice little break from PACES, PACES, PACES! =D~
~Our kids eating their picnic, and then afterward they had a fun time playing on the playground there too.~
~Several weeks ago, I posted a pic of my French bread that I had made, and had several requests for me to post my French Bread recipe, so here it is, better late than never. =D~

~Heather's French Bread~
I have used this recipe for about 20 years now (Whew! That makes me sound old, but it helps to know that I started making my own bread when I was 11. =) using this recipe for my bread business too. It's easy, light and YUMMY! I love this recipe because it makes 4 (20 oz.) loaves, so I can give one or two away, serve one for supper, and freeze another one for later! =)
Microwave for 2 mins:
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 Tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons salt
4 Tablespoons marg. or butter (half of stick)
2 cups water
After pulling bowl out of microwave, stir to make sure butter melted, then add:
2 cups warm water
(CORRECTION) 2 packages of yeast, or 1 HEAPING Tab. or 2 Tablespoons of yeast.
6-8 cups flour
Mix up and you will need to knead in the last cup or so of flour, and cover and let rise for 45 mins. then divide dough into 4 equal parts. Roll out each on a floured surface and into a rectangle and then roll from side to side into a jelly roll and place seam down on a greased pan (cookie sheet) tucking the 2 ends under. Slice about 5 slices diagonally half way through the loaf with a serrated knife, and brush with oil, and let rise for 45 mins. Repeat with the other 3 sections of dough. Bake at 350 for 25 mins. or so, (maybe more) until the tops are golden, and when you tap on the loaves they sound hollow. After you take the bread out put them on cooling racks and brush tops with butter. It's hard to explain bread recipes by writing them out, so if you have any questions, just leave a comment, and I'll try to answer your questions. I serve this just room temp on a cutting board, with soft butter, and everyone slices their own, like you would get at a restaurant, or buttered and then heated in aluminum foil, or buttered and laid on a pan and toasted in the grill part of my oven for breakfast. YUM! YUM!
Also, here is a fun Sunday night snack using this French bread.
~French Bread with bacon, tomatoes, and cheese~
Cut a loaf of baked French bread in half longways and place on a cookie sheet, cut sides up.
Butter each half of the bread.
Mix together:
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 teasp. mustard
1 teasp. Worchestershire sauce
and spread on top of the 2 halfs.
Top with crumbled pre-fried bacon, grated cheese, and diced tomatoes
Bake until cheese melts at 350, then bring out and slice in 2 " pieces and serve.
Mix up a batch of French bread today, set the table, smell the wonderful aroma of homemade bread, call your family around and Enjoy! =)


Rob and Deanna said...

Thank-you for your recipe! I have been wanting this recipe ever since Laura made some for our family. We LOVED IT! If I wasn't so lazy I'd make some now, sounds really good! ;-) Laura used honey instead of the sugar & I couldn't believe that it worked. I didn't know that trick. Nice that you were able to get a baker's stand. That is so much nicer than crates in giving you more shelf AND counter space.

A Moment in the Life of a Mother said...

Thanks for the recipe Heather. I have never tried bread like this. I have only baked biscuits and fried bread. I'm going to try this and see if I can do it. It sounds wonderful. Thanks and God bless. I love to read your blog and I check it everyday. Take care.

Michele said...

Amazing that you posted this recipe today! I made French bread yesterday for the first time! It was that great and yours looks so much better. Thank you for sharing the recipe. I will try this one and hopefully it turns out better this time!

Michele said...

typo correction - it wasn't that great! not it was that great. Didn't want anyone to think I was bragging. ;o)

Vonnie said...

Yummy!! That after church snack sounds heavenly. I need to try that sometime.

Liz said...

Mmmm...MMmm....that french bread would make great poboys. I need to try it!!!

Tamra said...

Your bread looks so yummy! I'm going to try this recipe sometime. Glad you were able to find a piece of furniture to fit in your kitchen!

Sayler Family Blog said...

Thank you for the recipe, Heather. I make bread every week but have never made French bread before. I so glad that you were able to find just the right piece of furniture to fit in your kitchen. Have a wonderful day. Our prayers are with you!

Myranda said...

Love the new piece of furniture! Looks great there! Enjoyed your post!

Liz said...

Heather...yes they are like sub sandwich. There are fried oyster, shrimp, fish, crawfish or you can just have a hot ham or open faced roast beef with gravy and cheese. So yummy and are always served on good Louisiana, crusty french bread!!

Arlene said...

Thanks for the recipe.I know it will be delicious.I love to read your blog and seeing the pictures. may God bless you all is our prayers.

sankey family said...

Your bread looks delicious - I need to try that. And I agree - I would love the snack recipe you posted! Sounds yummy.
I really like the kitchen furniture, also - it's beautiful.
Take care and enjoy your weekend away from PACEs! We sure are.
Love, Melodie

Emily said...

That bread looks AWSOME! I wish I could have some right now! We can't wait to see you when you come back to the USA.

Kelly S said...

Your poor girls! I'm sure it takes discipline to get them to double up, but it will be well worth the effort! Joshua has had to do some doubling up before and it wasn't fun! Although, we do Abeka DVD (not paces) and I'm sure paces makes it easier to double.

The bread looks very good. Thanks for the recipe!

Anonymous said...

Who ever heard tell of an anonymous Moma! :-) But at least it let me post a comment. I was soooooooo thankful that the Lord helped us find that stand for your kitchen the last minute. I had been looking and trying to figure out how to find something for two weeks but when you are in a Country where things are one of kind and scattered and no transportation I was a bit overwhelmed. God knows and cares about the things that we care about. In on hour we had that thing and it to your house (even if a clerk did have to bring it home for us in a grocery cart! Anyway I am thankful it worked. I love you, Moma

Valorie said...

Thanks for sharing your life, Heather. New furniture, especially when you desperately need it, is a big thing to any homemaker. The bread looks so good. I might try it myself. Love ya.

Marianne Brown said...

Heather, I made a batch of your bread today and had some questions. I added 8 cups of flour but the dough was so sticky when I tried to roll it out I couldn't. Is this normal? As I worked with each section I added and additional 3/4 cup of flour and then it was easier to work with. But instead of raising up it raised out..all over the cookie sheet! Any suggestions? The taste was wonderful (according to my husband)but does yours get higher than an inch? Thanks for any insight. The only kind of bread I'm used to working with is sourdough and you basically pour it into the pan. Keeping you in my prayers, Marianne

~Heather~ said...

Hey, Marianne! It was nice getting your comment on my blog. Glad you tried my French bread recipe, but sorry that it didn't turn out perfect for you. I have noticed that at times I have to add more flour...even up to 10 cups...but since my home here in Bogota, Colombia is 9,000 feet above sea level, I couldn't remember if I had to add the extra flour here, or in the USA too, so I didn't put that in the recipe. =) However, The adding of the extra flour should have not affected the rising of the bread. Do you know if your yeast was good? It is normal for it to spread out on the pan some, but it also rises to about 3" to 4" high. I have never had my French bread not rise above an inch high. So sorry that that happened to you. Some things that I wonder about are: 1. If your yeast was fresh enough, 2. Did you try to roll each loaf in a tight jelly roll? I think that would help it not spread out so wide. 3. Did you accidentally get more than the 4 cups of water that the recipe calls for? I'm just trying to think out-loud as to what would have caused it to not do good for you. Wish I could have been there to help fix the problem. If you ever get the nerve to try that recipe again, I trust that it works GREAT for you! I've made it 100's of times (no lie, for I had my own bread business for several years) and never have had it not rise for me.
So Sorry! Hope to see y'all at IHC! Thanks tons for your prayers! If you have any other questions, please feel free to write back.
Love, Heather

Marianne Brown said...

Heather, Thanks for the ideas of what might have gone wrong. My yeast is good, amount of water was fine. I just happened to think: you said to heat the 1/2 the water, salt, sugar and butter for 2 minutes. Now, 2 minutes in my microwave means that the liquid is almost boiling in that time. Could I have killed the yeast due to the heat? I put the yeast and water in the bottom of my bowl and poured the flour on top then added the hot mixture. I forgot to tell you that I let it raise for 2 1/2 hours before I baked it and it still was only an inch and a half high. How hot is your mixture when you take it out of the microwave? Thanks again!

Marianne Brown said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Dear Heather,
I so enjoy reading your blog! It sounds like you and your family and doing a wonderful and meaningful work there in Columbia.

Just wanted you to know that my friend, Gale (A Moment in the Life of a Mother's blog) invited my family over after church this past Sunday evening. She made your French Bread with bacon, tomatoes, and cheese recipe. It was so delicious and a big hit!!
Thanks for sharing! I plan on adding that to my recipe book.

With love and prayers,
Jen Shillington

P.S. When are you coming back to the States to have that precious baby? Do you know if its a boy or girl?

Anonymous said...

I made the French Bread on Monday night and by Tuesday night, all we had left was 1 loaf! I enjoyed some of mine with the bacon/cheese/ was very good.
The recipe was very easy to follow, easier than making many biscuits or "roll" recipes!
I did have a question tho...what do you mean by "rolling the dough back and forth, like a jelly roll"? Since that confused me, I rolled 3 up tight (like making cinnamon bread) and the 4th one, I just shaped with my hands. I couldn't tell a major difference in them but would like to know the "correct" method for the future. :)
My children loved the bread..."More, Mommy, more bread, please!"
I plan to make this bread frequently! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe.

Anonymous said...

PS...I did mine with only 1 package of yeast, and the bread was heavier than I expected..but I think that was part of the yummy taste. I'll have to try it with 2 packs now. :)


~Heather~ said...

It was nice to get your comments on my blog. Glad you made that French bread, and that it turned out good for you.

You are correct, the jelly roll is like you were making a pumpkin roll, or like you make cinnamon rolls to where you roll the dough into a rectangle, then roll it up SIDE TO SIDE (L to R or visa versa) on the long sides. Then place that jelly roll on a cookie sheet, tucking the 2 ends under, and then make the slices in the loaf with the knife. Does that make sense? It surely is hard to describe some of these actions by typing them out. HA! If you have anymore questions, just ask and I'll try to make my instructions make sense.

The French bread is a tad heavier bread than other loaf breads, but the 2 packages of yeast may help it to be a tad lighter. Since I rarely have used those packages, I thought that there was more yeast in them than there is, so thus the correction on using 2 packages.

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