Yes, I’m farm steading it making my own bread, but I’m not churning vegan butter just yet …
I normally shop at Trader Joe’s, occasionally Wegman’s or Whole Foods. Stores with better carbon footprints, those that are tinier and sometimes have bread in paper wrappers for like $15 a loaf. I hold these beautiful, crusty creations and really think hard if it’s worth getting myself in debt over artisan bread. And then some crotchety lady usually bumps into my shopping cart, knocking me out of dream land, I put the bread down, and grab a loaf of $3 whatever “this is close enough” kind of bread.
But recently, my husband tore his ACL (skateboarding of all things … yes … he’s 12) and had pretty major knee surgery. I popped into the grocery store closest to where I worked so I could be home asap to take care of him. It was a weird hour, so the store was eerily quiet, and as I wandered down a giant aisle filled with 1000s of loafs of bread, each in their own plastic bag, I had a brief moment of panic. Oh my god, I though, it’s not just me buying my loaf of bread and throwing out the bag; It’s me and a thousand other people. For this store alone. During this week alone.
The green freak in me stopped buying bread from the store that day. I mean, yes, if we’re craving bagels, we’ll grab some from the bakery section and put into a paper bag or whatever, but no more plastic laden chemical filled carbs.
So I stopped for the earth and sustainability’s sake, but here’s a snapshot of the ingredients in Wonder Bread if you needed something else to help you end your love affair with bagged bread. I know, making your own bread seems super scary. Bus is it as scary as… azo … dicarb … onamide…? I don’t know what that is, perhaps it’s perfectly lovely and I’m being harsh. Okay, I legit just googled it to see if I was being unfair and it’s nicknamed the “yoga mat chemical” because it’s commonly found in foam based plastics. And it’s banned in Europe…. gonna leave that one right there.
Anyway, here’s a prettier picture and an even simpler recipe. You don’t need a bread machine, a million ingredients, or all dang day for this one either. I use my food processor with a dough blade, but a standing mixer or the good old fashioned knead with your hand method will surely suffice.
You will need:
2 cups flour
1 cup oats
2 tablespoons quick rise yeast
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
So first thing’s first, you’ll want to start this in a large bowl where you’ll do all of your mixing. Put your two tablespoons of yeast in with the warm water and sugar. Hot water will kill the yeast, so be sure it’s just luke warm. The sugar feeds the yeast, so we can’t skip this step, though you can swap for coconut or date sugar if you prefer non refined. Let this sit for about 5-8 minutes until you see little puffs start forming; this is your yeast activating.
Next, add in your flour, salt, and oats, then mix with your wet ingredients. I mixed with my dough blade on medium for about 5-6 minutes until my dough started to feel thick and stretchy. If kneading by hand, do so for about 15 minutes. Mist olive oil in a baking pan and then plop your dough in. Let rise in a warmer area for about 60 minutes and then bake in a preheated oven at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes. That is it. You can pop fun nuts and seeds on top, baste with agave or sprinkle with rosemary or something fun to diversify this as you need. Let me know in the comments if you are a seasoned bread maker or if this will be your first time! If you made this recipe, tag me on Facebook or Instagram, and I would love to share your creation in my stories! Also check out my tips for sustainable, waste free baking here.