Labor day is a turning point; when we switch our thinking from picnics to packed school lunches. But, it is also the time when the summer fruits are busting out their last hurrah and the tomatoes are in their peak glory. This pizza is an ode to my dad’s garden and the bounty of tomatoes and squash that he grew. He is a magnificent gardener and this pizza needed nothing more than olive oil, a dash of salt and fresh herbs to be magnificent. I threw on a bit of mozzarella to satisfy the children.
I made the pizza dough from Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day, using bread flour from a local miller, Bakersfield Flour and Bread, but you can use all-purpose or bread flour that you have on hand. It is fun to experiment with all kinds of flours and pizza dough is just the place, since it is so forgiving. You can watch me toss this dough in the air (there is a cameo appearance by my poodle, Miles) in our @breadin5 Instagram video.
It’s August, but I need to talk to you about the holidays. In just a few weeks the kids will be going back to school, then they’ll dress up for Halloween, you’ll be carving turkey soon after and finally the Christmas music starts (you know it actually starts earlier). It’s just a minute away and we’ve got some really BIG news about all the breads you can bake for all of those occasions and many, many more. This November, Jeff and I have a new book coming out and it is now available for Preorder!!!
Holiday and Celebration Bread in Five Minutes a Day: Sweet and Decadent Baking for Every Occasion (HCBin5) is the book I have been waiting to create since the day Jeff and I started this adventure, over a decade ago. It is full of all the sweet and pretty breads a pastry chef gets jazzed about. There are breads from all over the world, for just about every occasion. From Tahini Swirled Challah, to Christmas breads from all over Europe (and beyond), pitas for Ramadan and other celebrations, even monkey bread for after school and of course, there are several sticky buns and cinnamon rolls. (more…)
Tiny baked buns filled with ham, cheese, mustard, mayo, honey and covered in poppyseeds – what’s not to love? I came across the idea for these buns while paging through cookbooks, and immediately headed to the kitchen to make them. With all the ham, cheese, mayo, and butter, I wanted to keep the brioche buns on the lighter side, so I used our no-knead challah dough–it’s basically a light brioche. Plus, my family swoons every time I make it. I wasn’t wrong. These buns are delicious, and they are perfect for every occasion. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, baby showers, pool parties, even Father’s Day.
It has been hovering around 100°F here in Minnesota for the past few days. This is what I consider August weather and I’m not accustomed to giving up my oven quite so early in the season, but alas, it is just too hot to turn it on. However, it didn’t stop me from making Monkey Bread. I just threw the pan of cinnamon sugar coated brioche in my crock pot and let it slowly “bake” until I had perfect Monkey Bread. We’ve been baking Five Minute Bread in a crock pot for years, thanks to a request from one of our readers. We were super skeptical at first, but were happily proven wrong and have been doing it ever since. It’s a brilliant way to avoid turning on the oven in the heat of summer, but it is equally useful at the holidays when the oven is in constant use and you still need to bake those holiday buns.
The caramel, sticky goodness of Monkey Bread is perfect for the crock pot, because it doesn’t require a crisp crust and is all the better for having a soft, fluffy texture. I used our classic recipe, but you don’t have to let it rise first, just put the pan in the crock pot, turn it on and let it go. Depending on your slow cooker, it can take anywhere from an hour to 2 hours. just depends on the power of your machine and size of the pan. (more…)
This is one of my favorite recipes in The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and it isn’t a bread at all. There is really nothing that smells as good as this granola when it is baking. It tastes incredible and makes a fabulous breakfast, snack or gift. It is one of those recipes you will end up baking over and over again.
I developed the recipe for the book to use in the “Aunt Melissa’s Granola Bread” on page 114. My Aunt lived with my father and me on a commune in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. She baked this granola at least once a week in massive batches to feed the many people who lived with us. It was so popular she ended up selling it to the local co-ops and then beyond. Our commune became all about granola production and I still to this day, over 45 years later, remember the smell of it baking.
My aunt passed away many years ago and the actual recipe with her. This one is very close and brings back all of the wonderful memories of that time and of her. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family does! (more…)
Last week I posted a picture of this cinnamon braid (made with our no-knead brioche dough) on Instagram, and had several requests for a recipe. So here it is! It’s basically a cinnamon roll in a prettier package, but it’s fun to make, and would be perfect for a Mother’s Day brunch or just because.
And, as it is National Poetry Month, here is a lovely one involving a kitchen, a ritual, and eating together.
smoothing away time with the fluid line
of your memory
i am in place at your table
in the morning damp of your still dark kitchen
i wait for you to come
stepping through the curtained doorway
you enter intent on this day
restart the fire
fill place the kettle
pull open the kitchen door
inviting daylight to come
welcoming it into your house—
bringing it into mine.
-Kimberly Blaeser, Rituals, Your – and Mine (full poem here)
Yes, we took on the Pinterest Easter bunnies. Have you seen them, pinned on everyone’s holiday boards? Turns out that picture is actually of a bunny cookie, and these sad rolls are more an accurate visual of how things would turn out. But, I’m happy to tell you that after making dozens upon dozens of rolls, we have some tips to help you make some cute little bunnies.
However, I won’t lie to you (it is Easter, after all) that they are a little tricky. And you may have some rolls that end up a little wonky. But, as my children oohed and ahhed over even the misshapen ones, I could see we had a winner idea.
If you are under the impression that flour has no taste, it may just because you haven’t tried fresh flour. I know it is an odd concept that flour would be “fresh,” since we’re used to buying bags that have an exceptionally long expiration date. But, when you make a loaf of bread with flour that was just milled it is so much sweeter and more flavorful. Milling grains at home has been on the rise for a few years and many of our readers already do, so they know of what I speak, but for the rest of us (me included), this is a new discovery. I love bread, obviously, and love it made with all kinds of flour, but this is a real treat and one I am so excited to share with you.
I went to an event at Baker’s Field Flour and Bread here in Minneapolis and was completely blown away by what I heard and ate. I met the farmers (Penner and Peterson Farms) who grew this wheat, right here in Minnesota and they could not be more passionate about their crops and the bread that results from their work in the fields. (more…)
The older I get, the less I am ‘into’ Valentine’s Day, but I have two little kids who still think it is an amazing holiday, so anything red, pink, and heart shaped is welcomed into our home on the 14th. I was scrolling through Instagram last week and came across this lovely heart shaped challah, and then remembering Zoe’s pink swirled bread and pink braid, I thought I could combine the two together for some celebration bread. I’m happy to report that it worked! The bread turned out pretty, and tasted delicious, too.