Your average American will eat 53 pounds of bread per year. That’s a lot to fork out for. If you find that your family get through loaves pretty quickly, why not start baking your own? Bread is easy to make and there endless varieties for you to try out. From your standard box tin loaf to tiger bread, soda bread, rye, sourdough, cornbread and more. Does this sound up your street? Well here are a few things that you should get for your kitchen as you start to dabble in the baking world.
A Reliable Recipe Book
This might sound obvious, but so many people forget it. They’ll dive straight in and try to work out the best way to make bread from a few home economics lessons and some sage advice from their Grandma. A good recipe book is a great investment. If you plan to bake specialist bread, get a book renowned for good recipes specific to the type of bread you intend to make. If you’re playing it safe, you can probably make do with downloading a couple of recipes from the internet.
Be up to date with bread making terminology. You’ll need to know the jargon to make good bread. Here’s one example:
Proofing – letting the yeast eat up the sugar from the flour and release gas and alcohol. This allows the bread to rise and gives it a nicer flavour.
Bread making machines have been around for some time now. It involves less effort than baking bread from scratch, but many people use them; so don’t feel too guilty. You can know exactly what has gone into your loaf without having to invest too much time and energy. Make sure that your breadmaker is the right size for the kind of loaf you want to make. If possible, buy one with a viewing window, so you can see if the bread has risen sufficiently before letting any heat out. Find a wide range of Panasonic bread makers online. There’s bound to be one that suits you perfectly out there.
You might think you can do without them. Guesstimating is fine, right? You can’t go that wrong, surely? Wrong. Always use a good pair of scales. A few grams this way or that can be the difference between a great bake and a poor one. We’d recommend digital scales for the most accurate measurements.
A Clear Work Surface
You heard us. It might not be so clean by the time the bread is done, but you will need plenty of clear, clean workspace when you start the process of creating your loaf. Make sure that you have enough room to thoroughly knead your dough without knocking half of your kitchen onto the floor. You will also need room to line your dishes and for a rack to allow the finished product to cool.
By the time your loaf is in and cooking, you’ve already invested a lot of time and effort into it. Don’t fall at the last hurdle. Make sure that you set a timer. A burnt loaf is pretty much useless and you don’t want to be watching it rise because you can’t remember how long it’s been in for.