Yes, you read it right. Today my day is consisting of making Homemade Bread in a Bag. Last year I went with my mother-in-law to a health and nutrition class for about 5 weeks. The first discussion we had was on the benefits and the nutritional value of making your own bread. I was so nervous to attempt to make the bread the first time, but after tasting the soft, luscious goodness that IS homemade bread, I was hooked and determined to make it and enjoy it.
The recipe is fairly cheap after you have made the initial purchases of all the ingredients. Most of them can be found in your pantry to begin with, especially if you are already on a healthy eating plan. Here is the Base Recipe for the Basic Bread in a Bag
Bread in a Bag
2 cups All-Purpose flour
1 package Rapid Rise yeast
3 TBS Sugar
3 TBS Non-Fat Dry Milk Powder
1 tsp Salt
1 cup Warm water
3 TBS Vegetable Oil
1 cup Whole Wheat flour
Combine 1 cup of the All-Purpose flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, dry milk, and salt in a heavy-duty freezer bag with a zipper lock. Squeeze the air out of the bag. Shake and work the bag with your fingers to blend ingredients.
Add warm water and oil to dry ingredients. Re-seal bag. Mix by working bag with fingers. Add Whole-Wheat flour; reseal and mix throughly. Gradually add remaining All-Purpose flour to make a stiff dough that pulls away from the bag.
Take bread from bag and place on a floured surface. Knead dough 2 to 4 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Cover dough and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll out the dough into a 12×7 inch rectangle. Roll up from narrow end, pinch to seal. Place in a greased loaf pan and let rise for 20 minutes or until doubled in size. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until brown.
Nutritional Info: 1 Loaf, 24 Servings. 80 calories, 2g fat, 0g saturated fat, 0mg cholestorol, 95mg sodium, 14g carbohydrates, 1g dietary fiber, 2g sugar, 3g protein, 0% vitamin A, 0% vitamin C, 2% calcium, 4% iron.
The advantage to making your own bread is the sheer fact that you are in control of what you are putting in your body! You do not have all the preservatives that they add to store-bought bread because you do not need the crazy long shelf life. You could easily make this bread in bulk and freeze a loaf or two that way you will always have some available. To give you an example of the differences between homemade and store-bought bread, I will show you the ingredients for a bread that I truly do enjoy that is bought from the store (that way I can give an opinion on a very good store-bought bread and not be judgmental.):
UNBLEACHED ENRICHED FLOUR (WHEAT FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), WATER, HONEY, SUGAR, WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR, RYE FLOUR, WHEAT BRAN, YEAST, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF EACH OF THE FOLLOWING: WHEAT GLUTEN, SALT, SOYBEAN OIL, VINEGAR, CULTURED WHEAT FLOUR, DOUGH CONDITIONERS (CONTAINS ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING: SODIUM STEAROYL LACTYLATE, CALCIUM STEAROYL-2-LACTYLATE, MONOGLYCERIDES AND/OR DIGLYCERIDES, CALCIUM PEROXIDE, CALCIUM IODATE, DATEM, ETHOXYLATED MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, AZODICARBONAMIDE), YEAST FOOD (AMMONIUM SULFATE) , MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE, CALCIUM SULFATE, ENZYMES, SOY FLOUR, SOY LECITHIN
Now I ask you…what would you rather be putting in your body? The fact is that bread is not going to be diet friendly in large quantities, but making your own can be more healthful and can at least give you a good choice to go to when you do want to splurge a little and have the calories from the bread.
The other wonderful benefit to making your own bread is that you can “customize”! You could easily add cinnamon and raisins to this bread recipe to make it a sweeter, more desert-like bread. You can also add flax seed, nuts, the possibilities are endless..be creative and have fun with it!
So that is my say for today. I intend to now go enjoy my bread along with Hungry Girl’s Cheeseburger Mac Attack for lunch (see her site in my last post to get the recipe for it!). I hope I have showed you a little change that can make a difference in the way you make healthy choices for your life! Have a fantastic day!
Question for Today:
Do you go organic with your foods to save your body from the preservatives? Or is the extra cost of the foods not worth it?