With people spending more and more time at home due to the pandemic, it’s been fun to see all the new hobbies families are enjoying. Baking homemade bread is one popular choice, which is why many grocery shelves have been empty in the baking aisle.
Here are a few tips to consider if you are practicing your culinary skills at home:
Follow the Recipe
If you’ve spent much time baking, then you know that recipes matter. The precise balance of ingredients is an important factor that will affect the overall outcome of your bread. Instead of estimating the ingredients, be proactive in using a digital scale – which is more accurate than using measuring cups.
Also, be careful if you are planning substitutions. For example, there are differences between fresh yeast, dry yeast, and sour yeast. You might not be able to substitute these ingredients 1:1, which is why it’s best to use the recommended ingredients whenever possible.
Choose Quality Ingredients
The quality of your ingredients will impact the outcome of your bread. Some flours work better in bread baking because of the way the gluten content holds the loaves together. Most of the time, you can use either all-purpose flour or bread flour, but don’t cut corners by adding ingredients that are stale, rancid, or outdated.
Optimal Kneading Time
Kneading the dough is a necessary step for activating the gluten. If you under-knead the dough, then it might not stick together very well. Over-kneading can also cause issues with how the loaf holds up during the baking process. The ideal amount of kneading should result in bread dough that can be stretched for 2 – 4 inches without it breaking.
Try Different Flavors
Now that you have mastered a basic bread recipe, it’s time to branch out with different flavors and recipes. Try adding a nut mix to your favorite banana bread recipe. Or, search online for popular recipes such as olive bread, raisin bread, or Maya sourdough.
Healthy Baking Ingredients
If you want a little crunch in your baked goods, then add Nature’s Garden to your shopping list. We have high-quality nuts and dried fruit that boost the nutrition of your homemade treats. Check out our various snack packs and mixes to find quality recipes for your at-home baking adventures.