Whole Grain Christmas Stollen and a Giant GIVEAWAY

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Christmas Stollen is a wonderful German baking tradition this time of year. A sweet loaf that is studded with dried fruit, spiced with cardamom and a special treat of almond paste runs through it. Once it comes out of the oven it is traditional to slather the warm loaf in butter then roll it in sugar, but we skip the extra butter and dust it with a thick layer of confectioners’ sugar to look like the snow outside. This loaf actually holds up very well for a couple of days and that makes it a great gift for the holidays.

Because it is the season of giving we are partnering with Red Star Yeast and Emile Henry for a GIANT BREAD BAKING GIVEAWAY. (more…)

Chocolate Chip Cookies from The Vanilla Bean Baking Book

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You are on the right site, we are just taking a short break from baking bread to bring you one of our absolute favorite recipes from Sarah’s new book, The Vanilla Bean Baking Book. You all know Sarah’s gorgeous work here on Breadin5, but you may not be as familiar with her baking website. Sarah has been working with us on the Breadin5 website and has been instrumental in our cookbook photoshoots as a food stylist. During our last marathon photo session she brought us cakes, cookies, scones and even pie she was testing for her own cookbook. When she brought in these chocolate chip cookies we took a moment out of the shoot to declare them the best cookies any of us had ever had. I do not say that lightly, considering I had a cookie company in college, have baked no fewer than 500 chocolate chip cookie recipes and have consumed even more. These are the best and now you have the recipe.

We are thrilled for Sarah and are so proud of her and this brilliant book! She and her publisher have graciously offered a copy of her book to a lucky winner of our GIVEAWAY. Just leave a note in our comments and we will select someone at random. It will make a great addition to your cookbooks or a lovely gift for someone on your list. All our normal contest rules apply. This contest is over.

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Herb Crock-Pot Dinner Rolls – Easy Thanksgiving Baking

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This week is Thanksgiving and we have to make the most of our oven space. Scheduling what will go in and out of the oven is just shy of a NASA level endeavor. By the time the pies come out, the Turkey must go in and then what to do about the rolls? There is an easy answer. What was originally a lark, bread in the slow-cooker has become my go-to holiday baking method. As you orchestrate the yams and dressing in the oven, your rolls can be baking on the counter. I made a savory herb dough for our Thanksgiving meal, but really you can bake just about any of our breads in this method.

Gluten-Free Epi (and a Better Batter Gluten-Free Flour Giveaway)

Gluten-Free Epi | Breadin5 (1 of 1)

When Jeff and I set out to write Gluten-Free Artisan Bread, we tried every commercially available flour blend to see if there was one that matched the results we got by mixing our own. Sadly, there were none. They either didn’t taste good, which was a deal breaker, or the bread had a dense texture that we weren’t willing to put up with. So, we created our own mix of flours, which creates a great tasting bread with a lovely texture. But, it does require buying several flours to create just the right flavor and texture.

As I slipped through time looking at gorgeous photos on Instagram recently, I noticed a bunch of gluten-free pastries made with Better Batter Gluten-Free Flour. I was skeptical, because of my previous experience with other brands, but I finally gave it a shot. Well, you can guess, based on the fact that I am writing about it, that I LOVED the results. Not only was the flavor there, but the texture was nearly the same as our home mixed flour. It is really convenient to have a single flour to buy, especially for those who don’t do other gluten-free baking and don’t stock a variety of flours.

Gluten-Free Pita | Breadin5 (1 of 1)

I mixed up our Master recipe from our Gluten-Free Artisan Bread and used Better Batter ounce for ounce to replace our Flour Mixture #1. After baking these beautifully crusty Epi, I also tested our pita breads, which came out perfectly puffed and had a lovely color. I haven’t tested all the breads in the book, but I think it is worth a try. Until then, I am confident that it works in our Master recipe and will bet it will be a success in any recipe using our Flour Mixture #1.

I contacted Naomi Poe, who started Better Batter and she graciously agreed to host a giveaway with us, so you can have a chance to try out the flour for yourself. She is going to send out a 5-pound box of Better Batter to FOUR lucky winners. All you have to do is write a comment below and you will be entered to win. US citizens only. All of our contest rules apply(more…)

Gluten Free Baguette

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The beauty of our 5 minute method of bread baking is that you have enough dough for more than just one loaf. This is true for our traditional wheat recipes and our many gluten-free breads. so whenever you’re in the mood for fresh bread, you just take a piece of dough and create the loaf you want. You may have tried our Master recipe from GFin5 and made a classic boule, but want to venture into some other shapes. A baguette is just as easy and a wonderful, quick loaf to make at any meal.  (more…)

Nutella Swirl Bread

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This is a babka cheat, but no one will complain that it just took a few minutes to put it together. I just used a piece of whole wheat brioche dough, slathered it with Nutella, rolled it up, tucked it into a loaf pan, let it rest and baked it. That’s it. Super Easy. Super Tasty. Super Fast. And Beautiful.

Check out the Swirly Crock Pot version as well. It is perfect for hot summer days or when your oven is occupied with other goodies.

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I went pretty light on the Nutella, so the bread would have a bit of chocolatey sweetness, but wouldn’t be over-the-top. You can use more and go with our brioche dough from New ABin5, for a more decadent treat. (more…)

Homemade Matzoh in 18 Minutes Flat – mixed, rolled and baked!

Homemade Matzoh | Breadin5 (1 of 9)

This week is the start of Passover and there will be a lot of matzoh consumed. Does anyone really love the taste of matzoh? I would guess not, unless you have a penchant for eating cardboard. I have very fond memories of eating matzoh with my grandparents at Passover, however it wasn’t the taste as much as the tradition. But, that doesn’t have to be the case if you make your own. It is one of the easiest and fastest flatbreads there is. In fact, it is dictated by Jewish tradition that matzoh be made in 18 minutes. The Jews had 18 minutes to flee Egypt and therefore didn’t have time to let their bread leaven. They mixed the dough and baked it right away. This recipe makes 6 good sized matzoh, which is just the right amount for a small gathering and you’ll be able to mix, roll and bake in 18 minutes flat. If you need more than that, I recommend getting your friends or family to help with the rolling and have a couple of baking stones on the ready. Obviously this won’t be Kosher for Passover, but if you are okay with that, it is the BEST matzoh you will ever eat. Even if you can’t partake during Passover, I recommend you try it for another day.

And, I suggest everyone, of any faith, or none at all, try this bread, just because it is fantastic!

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Soft Pretzels – (How-to Video on Shaping the Dough)

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When I was growing up in Connecticut I’d spend a fair amount of time in New York City. Every time I’d get off the train I’d get a pretzel from a cart outside the station. That and a trip to the Papaya King were enough to get me through the day. It was a cheap, tasty and filling snack for a teenager.

Part of the characteristics of that perfect New York pretzel is the way they look. Philadelphia has a pretzel culture too, but you’d never confuse it with it’s northern cousin, due to the shape. Philly has figure-8 knots and New York has…pretzel shape. It is admittadly nostalgia that makes me partial to the New York version. And you really should serve them with mustard to complete the experience. I like a grainy mustard and that is just not at all traditional, oh well.

How-to Shape a New York Pretzel Video. (more…)