Sunday, March 1, 2009

Babette's Bread

My parents' house always smells delicious because there is always something delicious that is either being cooked or that has freshly emerged from the oven. And, naturally, it is often assumed that I, as the oldest (and only) daughter, acquired my mother's skills in the kitchen at a young age. Not so. I enjoy cooking, but it's taken years of practice for me to feel comfortable in front of the stovetop.

My mother whips up fabulous dishes without the need for recipes, or at least that is how it seems. And when questioned about a particular dish, which happens often, her response is usually something along the lines of, "well, add a bit of this, and a bit of that. Quite simple really." No recipe provided. Ever. Just a charming French accent. So you understand that cooking, for me, was as simple as brain surgery. And you can also understand my complete shock when she recently brought me a couple loaves of home-made bread and casually told me "I'll send you the recipe." And then actually sent it. It's even got ingredients (!) and measurements (!!!!) and instructions. And here it is, complete with bisous from my Maman. Oh and this hearty bread tastes rather divine, especially when used to clean off a bowl of soup, à la française.


6cups warm water (105-115F)
6 cups whole-wheat flour (Or 2 white 4 whole-wheat)
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup wheat bran
1 cup cracked wheat
I added ½ cup sunflower seeds and ½ cup of flax seeds
3 teaspoons dry yeast
2 tablespoons canola oil

Heat water
Grease generously with butter 3 bread tins ( 5x9 inch)
Mix all dry ingredients
When water is at right temperature, add yeast
Let the yeast dissolve for 10 minutes
Add oil to water
Add wet ingredients into dry ingredients
Mix well
Divide into 3 loaves
Cover and let rise for one hour at room temperature
Heat oven at 350 F
Put loaves in oven
Bake one hour
Turn out immediately and let cool.


No comments:

Post a Comment