Saturday, June 2, 2012
I have mentioned my fear of yeast before.
Fear seems a bit strong. Maybe reluctance to get involved explains it better.
It just seems that yeast and I have never had a lot of success together.
I take the blame, since others do not seems to have my yeast related problems. Maybe it is related to some forgotten proofing trauma, but whatever the reason, I tend to shy away from the stuff.
So, anyhoo, I was wandering about on the World Wide Web the other day and came across a blog post about something I had never heard of before.
Cooking bread in a slow cooker!
The general idea is to make your favorite bread dough, and rather than let it rise, pop it right in the slow cooker and let it rise and then 'bake' in the cooker. They claim it is
1. faster, because you don't have to wait for the bread to rise.
2. great if you don't want to heat the kitchen up by putting on the oven in the summer.
I just thought it was an interesting idea.
And sometimes I just want to try something out!
But here was my problem.
I don't have a favorite bread dough recipe.
I don't have any yeast dough bread recipe.
I am not sure that I have ever made yeast bread.
Sure, I can whip you up a lovely loaf of Irish Brown Bread as fast as you can find a shamrock, but no yeast is involved, so I am OK. Yeast...hmmmmm...no.
So, how could I test this out?
Well, I had a great idea.
I would go to the supermarket and buy some frozen bread dough.
Defrost it and I would be good to go.
Maybe not great bread, but good enough for my test.
But none was to be had.
It might have been in the store somewhere but I could not find it.
They did however have aisle after aisle, yes aisles, freezer case after freezer case, of frozen pizza. Is there really a need for that many different variations of crappy frozen pizza?
It was 6 a.m. and the supermarket was just open and pretty deserted, so no one to ask, and after 12 hours at work I admit, I was losing interest.
And then I thought..."Hey, how about some of that fresh pizza dough they sell in the pizza department. Yes, my supermarket has a real pizza place inside it. Which makes all that frozen pizza even stranger, but I digress.
The only issue was that the top was not brown. So, as I had read on my research, I stuck the loaf under the boiler for a minute or too after brushing it with a bit of melted butter. Sort of defeats the whole not turning the oven on thing, yes, but it makes it look better, all brown and crispy.
I think I need to make a sandwich!
It rose nicely, more than I expected it would, got a nice brown bottom and smelled fantastic.
One hint. Use a big enough piece of parchment paper big that you can grab the ends of the paper to take it out of the cooker. You know, those things get hot!
I am not sure pizza dough was meant to be used that way, but for a spur of the moment experiment, it turned out pretty good.
I bet with a real bread dough recipe, a good one, it might be excellent!
But I might leave that for another day.
When I am brave enough to Face the Yeast!
This is my contribution this to this week's Weekend Cooking.
"Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, fabulous quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend."
Be sure to check out the other entries this week. As always, hosted by Beth Fish Reads.