Easy No-Knead White Bread

Easy No-Knead White Bread

This is a very easy white bread recipe. You probably have all of the ingredients in your pantry right now. If you are just now starting to bake bread at home, this is the best white bread recipe to start with.

The no knead bread craze is still going on and its even what got me started baking my own bread at home. This recipe is different than the one you will find in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a day because this dough is actually a batter. It rises relatively quickly and can be refrigerated if you don't want to bake it right away. WHITE BATTER BREAD-an easy white bread recipe

How to Make Homemade Pancakes from Scratch with Buttermilk Video Recipe

Homemade Pancakes When homemade pancakes are the topic of conversation, there are usually two camps.  Half of us fall into the thin, flat and crispy around the edges camp,  and the other half fall into the thick and fluffy camp.

For as long as I can remember, I've liked my pancakes relatively thin.  But I may be converting.  These homemade pancakes are made with buttermilk and remind me of pancakes I've eaten at a house that serves pancakesSmile.  They are thick and perfect for soaking up syrup too.

This homemade pancake recipe is also perfect for making a double batch and freezing them.  You can pop them in the toaster or microwave and have a filling breakfast even on those rushed mornings.  Check out the video recipe below.

 

Homemade Pancakes with Buttermilk

Ingredients:

3 Eggs

1 Tbsp Brown Sugar

1 cup  Flour

1 Tbsp Baking Powder

1/2 tsp Salt

2/3 cup Buttermilk

2 Tbsp  Oil

Directions:

The first thing you want to do is preheat your griddle or pan.  You want a medium low heat.  If the pan is too hot your pancakes will burn before they've had a chance to cook through.

In a medium mixing bowl, beat the eggs with the brown sugar until light.  Make sure any lumps of brown sugar are adequately broken up.

Mix the dry ingredients together and add them to the egg mixture.  Add the buttermilk and oil and stir just until combined.  The batter will still be slightly lumpy.  Don't overmix or the pancakes will be tough.

Pour about 1/4 cup of batter in the pan or griddle for each pancake.  Cook until he surface is dotted with tiny bubbles, then flip with a spatula and cook on the other side until light brown and cooked through.

How to Pack the Homemade Pancakes For Freezing

Cool cooked pancakes on a wire rack.   Place pancakes in an airtight container or freezer bag with waxed paper in between each pancake.  You can also wrap them individually using foil or sandwich bags.

To Reheat Homemade Pancakes

Remove pancakes from the freezer and unwrap.  Place them in a toaster on the low setting until heated through.  You can also reheat the pancakes in the microwave for 30-60 seconds depending on your microwave.

 

No Knead White Bread-Makes Three Loaves

No knead bread
No knead bread

My quest for a no knead white bread recipe started with a book I stumbled upon. Artisan Bread in Five was the first book I read on bread baking. The concept intrigued me and since I wasn't interested in wasting precious minutes kneading dough, I gave it a shot. I was hooked from the first loaf. I've read dozens of books, websites and magazines dedicated to the art bread baking since then.

I've also baked several loaves and have even gotten into sourdoughs, which are a whole different slightly unpredictable animal. If bread is like crack, I guess Artisan bread in 5 was my gateway drug.

This no knead bread recipe gives you lots of bang for your buck. Minimal hands on time and three loaves to show for your trouble. Its a little different that most no knead bread recipes out there since it uses eggs to enrich the dough.

The dough is basic white, so you can feel free to add some nuts, dried fruit, or sprinkle with a little cinnamon sugar for variety. Make all loaves the same way, or give each one its own special flair. Whatever you choose, it will turn out great. This recipe is no fail.

No Knead White Bread Recipe

1 1/2 cups milk

1/2 cup shortening

1/4 cup sugar

2 Tbsp salt

1 1/2 cups water

3 Tbsp yeast

3 eggs

9 cups all purpose flour

Scald the milk in the microwave for about 1 minute. Add the shortening, sugar and salt. Blend them together until the shortening has melted. Add the water to cool the milk to lukewarm. Sprinkle the yeast on top and stir to dissolve. Blend in the eggs.

Place the flour in a large bowl and add the liquid/yeast mixture. Stir to combine. This dough will be wet and sticky, which is a characteristic of most no-knead bread doughs. Don't be tempted to add any additional flour. Trust the dough.

After the dough is well mixed, cover and let it rise for at least an hour. You can also refrigerate the dough and let it rise at least two hours. A refrigerated dough is a bit easier to handle once you get to the shaping stage.

Separate your dough into three equal portions and shape into loaves. Place in loaf pans and let rise until double in bulk, one to two hours.

Bake the loaves in a 375°F oven for 45 minutes.

How to Cook Gourmet on a Budget

If you want to cook gourmet but are on a budget and don't want to be eating rice and beans every day, I have a few tips for you. I have taken Dave Ramseys Financial Peace University and learned a lot from the class but there was one thing that didn't sit well with me.  The rice and beans statement.  If you have taken the class then you very well know that Dave suggests living on rice and Beans while you pay off your debt.  Well, maybe he didn't mean it literally, but I think a lot of people may think that you have to go that route to stay on track.  There are ways you can eat well, even eat gourmet if you are trying to save money.

Shop at Asian stores

I love Asian stores!  There's no real way to find out about these place because they don't really advertise.  Most of the time, you just have to keep your eyes open and know your city.  You can probably google "asian grocery" and your zip code to see where they are in your area.  I usually just swing by one if I see one while I'm driving and have time to check it out.

What can you get from Asian stores?  Lots of stuff, but mainly check out the great prices on produce.  I consistently get great prices on lemons, lime, cabbage, tomatoes, avocados, melons and leafy greens.  Other than that, proceed with caution.  You wont be able to tell what 80% of the other stuff in the store is much less know how to use it.

Shop at your local grocery store when they have good sales

Harris Teeter, Safeway, Giant etc.  ocassionally have that one item on sale that is just too good a deal to pass up.  One local store had whole chickens on sale for .68/lb.  I bought 8 chickens that day since the limit was 4 per person.  Not only did I have enough chicken for the month and beyond but I was able to make a meal for a friend who was recouperating from surgery.

Be careful with coupons

I used to do the coupon thing but it got a little too crazy for me so I stopped.  I wound up buying things that I wouldnt normally buy just because it was free or really cheap.  Then somebody strarted eating uo all my good deals with reckless abandon just beacause thay wer there.  If you do use coupons and stock up on multiples of one item, make sure your family has self control.  It;s not a good deal if you intend on something to last a couple of weeks and its gone  in a couple of days.

Find a Bakery outlet

You can find bread that normally costs 4-5 a loaf for 1.25 a loaf.  And its not expired!  If you get lucky, you may find english muffins, pita bread, 7 grain bread, assorted bagels and donuts and pastries at a fraction of the cost.

Bake your own bread|Cook Gourmet Bread

There are a few websites out there that do the math for you when it comes to making vs buying stuff.  I personally don't make bread from scratch because I'm trying to save money.  I do it because I like it.  It's become my new favorite hobby.  Here is the book that got me started baking my own bread.  If you are doing cost comparisons, most people add in the cost of their time.  If you make  six figures a year, it doesn't make sense to bake from scratch sole for money saving purposes.  Other people compare it to buying a $7 artisan loaf.  Well I'm not gonna buy $7 bread anyway so that comparison doesn't work for me.  Its not realistic.  Bottom line is even if my store had sandwich bread on sale for 50 cents a loaf, I still wouldn't buy it.  Once you've made your own bread, its hard to go back.  PS I draw the line at making tortillas--too labor intensive for me.

Make your own mixes from Scratch

Do you like to eat pancakes, cornbread and hot chocolate?  These are normally things that I buy in mix form or in a box.  You can actually make these things from scratch and you may already have some of the itams in your pantry.  Here is the book I reccomend for making your own mixes.  If you don't need all the pictures, here is a great website I found for making different mixes at home.  Even if you aren't on a budget making your own mixes helps eliminate some preservatives from your diet.

Have a friend take you to costco or another warehouse club

If you don't want to spend 50 or 100 on a yearly membership to your warehouse club, you can ask to tag along with a friend.  Bring your cash so you can reimburse your friend any items you purchase.  You can also get a one day pass at most of the major warehouse clubs for 5.  If you go and realize they don't carry the stuff you need and use on a regular basis, then you wont be out too much money.

Eat a little less meat

According to the government were only supposed to be eating 2oz of meat per day anyway.  I know I don't do that, but it may be a good idea to put less of a focus on the amount of meat you eat, especially when you are trying to save.  Don't try to do this overnight, just gradually reduce your meat portion little by little and maybe participate in meatless Mondays.

Calculate the cost per pound on everything

If shrimp is on sale for $5 when its usually $10 is that a good deal?  Not if you are trying to save money.  The barrier I set for myself at this point is not to pay more than $2 per pound for anything.  That may sound restrictive, but even with that as my limit, I'm still able to buy exotic vegetables, fresh fruit and veggies as well as fish.  

Grow fresh herbs if you can

This is the biggest ripoff in the grocery store!  Some places want $3 for a tiny pack of herbs, and sometimes I buy it but the whole time I know I can spend that amount one time and fresh herbs forever if I grow them myself.  Unfortunately I don't have a green thumb but I do plan on trying to grow herbs again soon. 

Learn to cook at home

This is the one thing that can save you the most money and calories.  If you really can't cook get a childrens cook book and go through that. Learn to cook by recipes but also learn technique.  

The Secret To Crunchy Clusters of Homemade Granola

Granola.jpg

Home made granola My first two attempts at making homemade granola were not a total disaster, but close to it.  What I wanted was nice clusters of granola that could rival those found in the bulk bins at Whole Foods.  You know, the ones that cost more than $6/pound.  They look so good but every time I walk on by thinking that I could probably do better by making it at home myself.

Well that certainly was not the case a few months ago when I tried making my own homemade granola.  I thought the honey call for in the recipe would be enough to clump some of my clusters together but it wasn't.  What I ended up with was basically toasted oatmeal flakes with some other stuff mixed in.  And after the whole concoction cool off, it wasn't even crispy.  Oh well.

Fast forward to today when I went one of my new favorite food sites.  A recipe for granola!  As I read through the list of ingredients, one caught my eye and I thought "could that be the secret I need to my homemade granola to cluster?"  Turn out it was.  The secret ingredient is egg whites!  Who would have thought?

The thing I love about granola is that you can pretty much do whatever you want to it and add so many different ingredients, extracts, nuts, grains and seeds to make it totally your own.

Here are a few homemade granola mix in ideas:

Dried Fruits:

Pineapple Strawberries Blueberries
Cranberries Raisins Mango

Nuts:

Cashews Walnuts Pecans
Macadamias Almonds Hazelnuts

Seeds and Grains:

Sesame Seeds Millet Pumpkin Seeds
Flax seed or Meal Poppy Seeds Quinoa
     

As you can see that's just the tip of the iceberg.  Taking a walk through your bulk aisles at the grocery store will inspire you to come up with your own unique flavor combination.  Here is the recipe for home made granola.

Ingredients:

4 cups rolled oats

1 1/2 cup unsweetned coconut

1 cup flax meal

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup egg whites

1/2 tsp almond extract

1/2 cup craisins

1/2 cup dates

Directions:

Mix all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl to distribute the sugar and spices evenly.  Add the coconut oil, egg whites and extract and blend.  Put the mixture on two sheet pans (I used three smaller sheet pans) and bake for 20 minutes at 350°F

Take the granola out of the oven and carefully flip section by section so it can brown evenly.  My granola stuck together a good bit at this point but don't worry about breaking it up into smaller pieces until it has finished cooking and cooled completely.

Put the granola back in the oven and bake for another 15-20 minutes.  Let the granola cool completely before storing.  I put mine in spaghetti sauce jars. Try not to eat it all in one day.Smile

*If you take a look at the original recipe you can see I changed a few of ingredients so I could use what I have on hand and it turned out great.  I can't thank Sara Kate enough for sharing this recipe and getting me out of my granola rut.