This past year, the hubs and I celebrated our first family Thanksgiving and actually hosted for some of our family members who were able to drive 8 hours to spend the day with us. We ate so much food, my sister helped decorate our Christmas trees (yes we have two, a big one and a mini one), I got to spend time with my family and my mom brought us a bread maker. I love my family but that bread machine is perhaps one of my favorite memories from the trip (just teasing mom).
I don’t believe in cluttering my tiny hot box kitchen with many gadgets because a) I don’t have the space and b) so many of them only serve one purpose. However, the bread maker is by far one of those gadgets I think everyone should have. It’s definitely in my top two for favorite kitchen toys.
I love bread. So does my hubs. We would on average spend $12-15 bucks a week on bread at the store. We would buy sandwich bread, dinner rolls, pizza doughs, garlic bread etc. Now that I have my amazing bread machine we spend anywhere from $1.50-$5.00 a week on bread. It’s amazing. If my apartment needed to be evacuated for any reason, I would grab my bread machine… and my cat and dog… and my flash drive with my papers on it. Point is- I love my bread machine. It’s incredible and has made my life so much easier and has cut a major cost from our grocery shopping.
The only problem I have with it is that I hate cooking bread in it. The loaves come out as this weird, super dense rectangle shape and I personally think it’s wasteful. Instead of cooking the bread in the machine, I let it do all of the kneading for me and then shape the dough myself before baking. A big thank you to my mom who got me the machine and rocked my world.
1 ¼ HOT water (talking about 80 Fahrenheit or 27 Celsius)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 ½ cups organic bread flour
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
2 tablespoons Earth Balance (or butter)
½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
Garlic powder (I like a lot of garlic but put your desired amount in)
***If you have a bread maker, you are going to set it on the dough setting and allow the machine to work its magic. If you do not have a bread machine you want to knead it as you would if making french bread.
Add the ingredients under heading Dough as they are listed into the bread machine. Allow bread machine to knead the dough. When the bread machine is finished kneading, take the dough and form a ball with it. Divide dough into 24 small pieces and roll those pieces into long ropes (about 10 inches) and don’t worry if they are not perfect (mine weren’t and still came out great). Twist two ropes together and continue twisting bread ropes until you have 12 bread twists.
Place the ropes on a greased baking sheet (ignore how ugly mine is, we bought cheap and will never make that mistake again) and cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place (I usually turn my oven on at this point to 400 degrees in order to preheat and give the loaves a warm spot to rise) for 40 minutes or until double the size.
Meanwhile, in a microwave safe bowl, melt earth balance or butter and then stir in the Italian seasoning and garlic. Once the twists are double in size, brush the glaze over them and place in the preheated oven. Cook for 12-15 minutes or until they are golden and delicious looking.