Oatmeal Honey No-Knead Bread

If you are looking for an easy recipe for a crusty and satisfying loaf of bread – this is the one! Oatmeal Honey No-Knead bread is definitely easy but it is also a little time consuming but so worth it. I wanted to make a bread to go with the home-made Tomato Macaroni Soup we were going to be having for dinner so it needed to be substantial. The dough was mixed together by 9 a.m. and the final loaves came out of the oven and 1 p.m. so 4 hours in total, but probably only 20-30 minutes of hands-on work.

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Rhubarb Loaf

It is finally spring and that means all things rhubarb coming your way. Rhubarb is one of my favourite flavours to use in baking and it is best used fresh not frozen. This recipe for Rhubarb Loaf is one that I posted last spring but I have lightened it up and reduced the sweetness so that this loaf is now a perfect breakfast. Rhubarb is technically a vegetable so eating it for breakfast is definitely a good thing. Those little red gems of tartness add amazing taste but definitely need a little sugar to make the flavour zing.
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White Bread

I have been blogging about baking for more than a year now and just today I realized that I haven’t posted my every day recipe for White Bread. Yes I know White Bread isn’t very healthy but really what tastes better than fresh bread spread with butter and topped with home made jelly or jam?  Not much in my books. At least there is no preservatives or ingredients that you can’t pronounce in this loaf.  This is my go-to recipe for dinner rolls as well – it is very versatile.  This White Bread is also fantastic toasted spread with your favourite topping which in my case would be peanut butter and crabapple jelly.

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No-Knead Country Bread

This recipe for No-Knead Country bread has turned my bread baking world upside down! When I first saw this recipe I thought why would anyone bake bread in a pot? But after trying it I can definitely see why and I am quite sure I will continue doing it for years to come. It is such a wonderful bread I am going to see if I can find a rectangular covered pot so I can make an actual loaf shape – not that there was anything wrong with the round loaf. But it does make for a good excuse to buy another cast-iron pan.

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Oatmeal Molasses Bread

It is bread making season! Saturday morning, the cold October winds are blowing and it is raining…..time to put a pot of chicken and barley soup on. That is the definition of a dreary autumn day here in Northern Ontario. But the upside is that the house is going to smell wonderful. Now we need some fresh bread to go with that simmering pot of soup. Today’s bread is going to be hearty, stick to your ribs sort of bread. This bread is an old-fashioned bread made with oatmeal, molasses and some whole wheat flour. If you have only all-purpose flour you can use that as well.

Oatmeal-Molasses-Buns

As we were having it for dinner I decided to make half of the dough into buns and the other half into a loaf for toasting for breakfast.  That was a good decision as the buns were wonderful and fluffy smothered in butter and dipped in the hot soup.

The molasses adds some sweetness but also a nice caramel colour to the bread. Once the dough is baked you can’t even see the oatmeal, but it does make it hearty.

Oatmeal-Molasses-Bun

The loaf sliced thinly made for great toast topped with my favourite peanut butter. I am thinking it would make a wonderful grilled cheese sandwich as well, maybe with some thin slices of apple and some old cheddar.

Oatmeal-Molasses-Bread

 

So if you have a pot of soup or stew simmering away for dinner this evening I strongly recommend you try this dough recipe and enjoy a hearty bun or slice of bread to dip with!

Oatmeal Molasses Bread
 
Prep time
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Serves: 2 loaves
Ingredients
  • 1 cup rolled oats-large flake
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2½ tsp instant yeast
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4-5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tbsp water
Instructions
  1. In the bowl of stand mixer add the rolled oats,canola oil, molasses and boiling water. Mix well by hand and let stand for about 15 minutes until mixture has cooled to just warm.
  2. With wooden spoon add in yeast and whole wheat flour. Let stand about 10 minutes until yeast has started to bloom.
  3. Add 4 cups of all-purpose flour and salt.
  4. With dough hook, mix until soft sticky dough has formed.
  5. Add up to a cup more flour until a dough ball forms. This dough will not completely come away from the sides of the bowl, the bottom will still remain soft.
  6. Transfer dough to a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap until it has doubled in size - about 2 hours.
  7. Using a spatula remove dough from bowl onto a well-floured surface. Divide dough in half. Shape either into 2 loaves or 1 loaf and 9 buns.
  8. Put shaped dough into well greased pans, cover loosely with plastic wrap and again let rise until it has reached the top of the pans which will take about 45 min to an hour.
  9. Meanwhile preheat oven to 375℉. Whisk together the egg white and water and carefully brush the tops of the dough.
  10. Bake 25-30 minutes for loaf and about 20-25 minutes for buns or until golden brown and bottoms sound hollow when tapped.
  11. Turn out onto rack to cool.

 

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Cheese Buns

All of the members of our household are big cheese lovers. One of our favourites is Asiago. It is quite a strong cheese and the older and drier it gets, the better it tastes. So when deciding on a cheese to add to bread dough to make cheese buns, it really was quite an easy decision to make.  Asiago it was!

Even the smell of the dough rising filled the house with the aroma of cheese. Once the dough hit the heat of the oven even the dog starting whining. I knew then this was going to be a good choice.

Cheese-Buns

 

Once they were baked, it was very difficult letting them cool before we devoured them. There was left over roast chicken and baby spinach in the fridge, so that was put to good use in building these cheese bun sandwiches. After a busy morning finishing taking the dock out the boys had a very satisfying lunch of chicken salad on fresh cheese buns. They made short order of this stack….I was lucky to get pictures!

Cheese-Bun-sandwiches

These buns would be great along with a pasta dinner or a barbecued steak and salad. Feel free to use any shredded hard cheese of your liking in this recipe. An old cheddar would also be wonderful. Don’t omit the hot sauce though.  It doesn’t give any kick to the buns, just enhances the flavour of the cheese. I think it is the secret ingredient that makes these cheese buns stand out.

Cheese Buns
 
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Author:
Serves: 24 buns
Ingredients
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1½ c warm water (105℉ to 115℉)
  • 2¼ tsp dry yeast
  • ⅓ cup canola oil
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 2½ cups shredded Asiago or Old Cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 4½ - 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg- for brushing tops
Instructions
  1. In bowl of stand mixer add sugar and warm water. Sprinkle yeast on top and let stand until frothy, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add oil, hot sauce and egg. Mix well. Stir in 1 cup of the shredded cheese and the parmesan cheese.
  3. Add 4 cups of flour and salt. Mix with dough hook until soft dough forms, adding ½ to 1 cup more of flour until dough ball forms.
  4. Transfer dough to oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a draft-free spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. Turn dough out onto floured surface and punch down. Sprinkle with remaining cheese, reserving 2 tablespoons for topping. Knead cheese in. Divide dough into 24 equal pieces. Form into balls and place on the parchment lined baking sheets at least 2 inches apart and 12 to a sheet.
  6. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise again, about 30 minutes.
  7. Preheat oven to 350℉.
  8. Whisk egg and with a pastry brush, brush tops of buns and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
  9. Bake on bottom rack for about 20 minutes until tops are golden.
  10. Transfer immediately from pan to cooling rack.

 

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Multigrain Honey Bread

I have been working on a multigrain bread recipe using honey for a while and I have ended up going back to my original idea….using Red River cereal. I had been given a recipe about 20 years ago that included Red River cereal as one of the ingredients. Unfortunately that recipe made 5 loaves of bread and my family found it to be quite heavy. So by merging a whole wheat honey recipe into this old recipe I have come up with this one.

Multigrain-Honey-Bread

Red River cereal is a very old Canadian cereal, it has been around since 1924 and is named after the Red River in Manitoba where it originated. The ingredients of Red River Cereal are: Cracked Wheat,Cracked Rye,Cracked Flax and Whole Flax. I only use it for bread dough and you can also add it in small amounts to any dough/muffin recipe to give it a healthy boost.As it contains whole grains it is best to keep it in the freezer, where it will keep fresh for months.

Multigrain-Honey-Bread

Making your own bread is a very satisfying feeling. You know the ingredients you have used and most of them you can actually pronounce! So if you haven’t tried making bread from scratch, I strongly recommend you give it a go.  It really isn’t difficult, just a little time consuming.  If you don’t have a stand mixer, this recipe can all be done by hand using a wooden spoon and your hands to do the kneading.  Kneading bread is an awesome stress releaser and sometimes I will do it by hand just to relax.

And of course, nothing smells quite like bread fresh from the oven!

Multigrain Honey Bread
 
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Author:
Serves: 2 loaves
Ingredients
  • 1 cup Red River Cereal
  • 1½ cup boiling water
  • 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup honey
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 4½- 5½ cups all-purpose flour
Instructions
  1. Add the cereal to the one cup of boiling water. Let this stand for at least 15 minutes, stirring often until the water has almost absorbed and cereal is just warm.
  2. In the meantime in the bowl of a stand mixer dissolve yeast in warm water. Add honey, and stir well. After it has bloomed stir in the canola oil. Add 4 cups of flour and with the dough hook knead until the dough pulls away from the sides. Add additional flour tablespoon at a time until the dough pulls away. When dough is smooth and elastic, place it in a well oiled bowl. Turn it several times in the bowl to coat the surface of the dough with oil, and cover with a damp cloth. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk about 1½ hour.
  3. Punch down the dough. Shape into two loaves, and place into two well greased 9 x 5 inch loaf pans. Allow to rise until dough is 1 to 1½ inches above pans.
  4. Preheat oven to 450 degrees for conventional. Place pans on bottom rack and now reduce oven temp to 375 degrees .
  5. Bake, rotating pans after 20 minutes, until tops are golden brown and internal temperature reaches 205 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, about 45 minutes total. Transfer to wire racks. Let cool slightly; turn out onto cooling rack.
  6. Cool completely before slicing.

 

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Best Homemade Pizza

I have been making this pizza dough ever since it was published in Bon Appetit a while back. It has even replaced my go-to recipe for our wood-fired pizza oven so that tells you just how good it is. I have gone back to baking my pizzas in a pan! It results in a thicker crust, but it is nice and crispy and chewy and has a fantastic texture.

Pizza

This dough is very forgiving and most times I will make it in the morning and put it in a very large bowl, cover it and let it rise all day until it is time to bake pizza. I find that the longer the dough rises, the better the flavour is.  I have even put it in a plastic bag and kept it in the fridge for a few days before baking it and it was fantastic.

Pizza

So back to the wood-fired pizza oven, because this dough has a quite a bit of oil in it, it is very difficult to put on a pizza peel and slide onto the stone.  I can tell you this because I tried it and ended up with a really ugly looking calzone stuck to the bottom of my pizza oven!  It smelled really good until it started to burn, but then at least I could scrape it off and start over.  So if you do decide to slide it directly on to your stone, ensure you sprinkle lots of cornmeal down first ! That’s when I decided to make the pizza on a baking sheet and put the sheet directly on to the stone.  That pizza was terrific!

Pizza

 

If you don’t have a pizza oven, no worries, this pizza will cook up beautifully in a really hot oven.  I like at least 450ºF.  Remember to always put your pizza stone in the oven before you turn it on, this way it will have lots of time to absorb the heat.  It is a good idea to let the oven come to temperature and then wait at least another 10-15 minutes for the stone to get really good and hot. If it is a hot day and you still want to make pizza, you can use your gas/propane bbq to cook your pizza, just put your pizza stone on the grill and let it heat up and away you go – a pizza oven outside!

Best Homemade Pizza
 
Prep time
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Author:
Serves: 1 pizza
Ingredients
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for bowl, plus more for pan
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ c warm water
Instructions
  1. Whisk together yeast and 1½ cups warm water (105–110°) in bowl of stand mixer; let stand until yeast starts to foam, about 5-10 minutes.
  2. Add in 2 Tbsp. oil, then flour and sprinkle salt on top.
  3. Using dough hook, mix on low speed until dough comes together, then continue to mix with dough hook until smooth and soft. This usually takes about 5 - 7 minutes.
  4. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turning it a few times so that it is well coated. Ensure the bowl is large enough that will allow the dough to at least double, more is better. Cover loosely with plastic wrap.
  5. At this point you can refrigerate the dough if using the next day. If using same day, put in draft free spot and let rise. If the dough starts to climb over the top, gently push down with the palms of your hands through the plastic wrap.
  6. Best if you let rise at least 4-6 hours, preferably 8.
  7. When ready to make pizza,coat a sheet pan or a cookie sheet with raised edges liberally with olive oil. Gently turn dough out of bowl onto pan. Let it rest for 10 minutes before attempting to work with the dough.Then using your fingers work the dough out into the pan, if it starts to spring back, let it rest again. You may need to do this a few times before you have it reaching all sides.
  8. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rise again about 30 minutes. At this point put your pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees. Once the dough has puffed, gently spread your sauce and add your toppings.
  9. Place on pizza stone and bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden around the edges and cheese is melted.
  10. With a wooden or metal spatula, slide the pizza onto a wooden cutting board. Let sit for 5 minutes before slicing.
  11. Adapted from Bon-Appetit

 

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Blueberry Zucchini Loaf

It was a spectacular weekend at camp. The weather was hot, 30ºC, almost too hot for me.  It is sometimes hard to believe that 6 months from today, it could be -30ºC!  What a wonderful place Northern Ontario is.  It has been so hot, windy and dry that the wild blueberries have been hard to find this year.  The berries in most of my usual spots have been all dried up, but I got lucky and the one just down the road had some under the trees in the moss.  I picked 4 cups, enough to make something….what should I make with my valuable commodity?

Wild Blueberries

The decision Blueberry Zucchini Loaf…a quick loaf full of shredded zucchini, lemon zest and my wild blueberries.  This recipe makes 2 loaves so 1 to eat and 1 to freeze or share. As with most quick breads this is mixed by hand in a bowl, no appliances required, other than a box shredder for the zucchini if you consider that to be an appliance.

This is the perfect snack to take on a picnic lunch while fishing and that is exactly what we did with our Blueberry Zucchini loaf.  Thank goodness that the loaf made it into the cooler, because I forgot the rest of the containers that had the salads in them. We survived the day and so did the fish as we didn’t even catch one!

Blueberry-Zucchini-Loaf

I hope you have the opportunity in your neck of the woods to enjoy wild blueberries and make something yummy with them, or just enjoy them one at a time – a burst of wonderful.

Blueberry Zucchini Loaf
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 2 loaves
Ingredients
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup regular yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1½ cups white sugar
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease 2 loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, oil, yogurt,vanilla,lemon zest and sugar. Fold in the zucchini.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, salt,baking powder and baking soda.
  4. Sprinkle dry ingredients over the wet and stir until almost combined.
  5. Gently fold in the blueberries. Divide equally between the 2 pans and smooth the tops.
  6. Bake 50 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a skewer inserted in the center of a loaf comes out clean. Cool 20 minutes in pans, then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.

 

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Homemade Hamburger Buns

I have been searching for a good dough recipe for hamburger buns for quite a while. I really don’t like buying store bought bread of any sort, but making the perfect hamburger bun has eluded me for quite some time. My son, Matthew, is the connoisseur of hamburger buns. If the bun falls apart while he is eating it is a world calamity. If the bun isn’t big enough for the burger that is another issue. It has to be sturdy enough to hold all of the condiments but not too thick.  So you can see finding the perfect hamburger bun is a huge challenge at my house, let alone making one from scratch.

Hamburger-Buns

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