My husband is an amazing man. This isn’t just a statement of wifely pride, but I’m pretty sure it’s a fact. Not only can he win contests with bacon wrapped water chestnuts, but he is a fierce baker and makes lovely bread.
A few days ago I walked into the kitchen and one of my frying pans was full of…something. I wasn’t sure what the something was until I got close, and until I peered at the man, who supplied, “toasted sesame seeds, I’m gonna make bread.” And thus he did. A hearty bread with rye and whole wheat flour which he shaped into loaves and rolled in his toasted sesame seeds before baking. The result was killer. Hearty, but not like chewing on cardboard with a nice sesame crunch.
Now, I’m not going to share his recipe…mostly because I left it at home, but I will share one of our favorite bread rising tricks. Once the dough is combined and kneaded to an appropriate stiffness place it in a greased microwave safe bowl. Cover with a tea towel and pop the whole thing into the microwave. Give it 30 seconds on high. Let sit for 2 minutes and then another 30 seconds. Then walk away and left the yeast do it’s thing. In about 20-25 minutes the dough will be ready to punch down for a second rising, or to shape depending on your dough. This cuts a lot of time out of the process and something about warming those water molecules helps to create a very tender mouth feel as well.
Rumor has it we’re making pumpernickel next…I’m looking forward to it.