There’s hardly a more essential food item in our lives than bread of all shapes and sizes, hence the expression, “our daily bread.” Bread is the base for our butter, jams, and pizzas. It holds our favorite sandwiches and burgers together; there are varieties great for breakfast, a sweet dessert, and a favorite fluffy side item. Kneading is especially fun for the kids! While the bread is baking, to make the baking even more enriching, we encourage you play “Patty Cake” with your toddlers and to read with your children the classic The Little Red Hen by Jerry Pinkney, Everybody Bakes Bread by Nora Dooley, and Loaves of Fun: A History of Bread with Activities and Recipes from Around the World by Elizabeth Harbison.
Easy Bread in a Bag
1 gallon-size resealable plastic bag
3 cups Flour
¼ cup Sugar
1 packet Yeast (rapid rise or regular)
1 cup Water, warm
¼ cup Butter, melted
1 tsp. Salt
1. Preheat oven to 375° and grease a loaf pan.
2. In a small bowl, stir the sugar, yeast, and 1 cup of the flour. Pour into the resealable bag and add the warm water. Seal the bag, pressing out the air.
3. Begin shaking and mixing the bag by hand (a great way to get the kids involved!). Let the bag rest for 10 minutes.
4. In the same small bowl used earlier, combine 1 cup of flour with the salt and pour into the bag, along with the melted butter. Seal the bag again, pressing out the air. Shake and mix again.
5. Open bag and add in the final cup of flour. Seal the bag, pressing out the air. Shake and mix for the final time.
6. Open the bag and remove the dough. Place it on a floured surface. With floured hands, knead the dough for 5-10 minutes.
7. Insert the dough into the loaf pan and place in a warm spot to rise for 30-45 minutes.
8. Bake for 25 minutes.
Biscuit Dough Garlic Knots
(Makes 16 knots)
1 (16-oz.) tube Buttermilk biscuit dough
¼ cup Butter, unsalted
2 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese, finely grated
¾ tsp. Garlic powder
½ tsp. Oregano, dried
½ tsp. Parsley, dried
¼ tsp. Salt
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly coat a baking sheet with non-stick spray.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, oregano, parsley, salt, and melted butter and set aside.
3. Separate the biscuit dough and cut each biscuit round in half. Roll each slice into a 5-inch rope, about ½-inch thick. Tie the rope into a knot, tucking the ends under.
4. Place the knots on prepared baking sheet and brush each knot with the seasoned butter mixture, using half of the mixture. Bake until golden brown, about 8-10 minutes.
5. Brush with remaining butter mixture and serve immediately.
No Yeast Pizza Dough
(Makes 1 family-size pizza round or 6 mini-pizza rounds)
1½ cups Flour
1 Tbsp. Baking powder
1 tsp. Salt
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 cup Water
1. Preheat oven to 450°F. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
2. Stir the olive oil and water together and pour over the flour mixture. Stir until a ball forms.
3. Turn onto a floured surface and knead 2-3 minutes. If too sticky, sprinkle with more flour.
4. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into one large crust or divide into 6 equal portions and roll out 6 mini-crusts.
5. Place on a baking sheet and top with your favorite pizza sauce, shredded mozzarella, and toppings.
6. For a large pizza, bake for 15-20 minutes. For mini- pizzas, bake for 10-15 minutes.