28 Delicious Thanksgiving (and Thanksgiving Leftovers) Recipes for 2016

Thanksgiving 2016 2

It’s that time again; time for the annual Thanksgiving post. After almost 6 years of blogging, I have accumulated quite a few recipes that work in this category, so I have to cull some out so as to not end up with a post with 50 different additions. πŸ˜›

Let’s start with entrees. Because…turkey…ham. Yummy. πŸ˜€

This Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Glazed Ham is my absolute favorite way to make a ham. The ham turns out so moist and tender with such a delicious sweet/salty flavor you’ll keep coming back for.Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Ham-001This Sesame Soy Turkey Breast is fantastic if you’re a cook who’s willing to leave the traditional box a bit on Thanksgiving. This glaze can also be used on a whole turkey, a chicken, game hen, you name it.

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

I know that a lot of families like to serve a pasta dish as one of the main dishes so I’m including our favorite, this Cheesy Sausage And Meatball Pasta Bake. This makes a LOT, so it’s perfect for Thanksgiving, when a lot of people are there, with everyone getting as little bit of each dish.Cheesy Meatball And Sausage Pasta BakeLet’s move on to appetizers; those little bits you put out to keep everyone from storming the kitchen begging for food. πŸ˜›Β  One of my favorite easy dips (and when I say easy, I mean it) is my White Trash Dip. I know; such a classy name, lol. But it is great for appeasing the hungry mongrel hordes and quick to throw together, which is always a plus on Thanksgiving.
White Trash Dip
I have adored Boursin Cheese for years, but man, that stuff is expensive for the small amount you get. So I started making my own years ago. This is soooo good and always a hit. It’s creamy, great with veggies like celery sticks as well as crackers. If you have any left over, it also makes a great stuffing for chicken breasts.

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Ahhhh, side dishes. What would Thanksgiving be without 50 side dishes to serve with the turkey and ham? One of my all time most popular posts here at From Cupcakes To Caviar is my Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac And Cheese. This makes a HUGE pan of mac and cheese, so it’s perfect for the holidays.Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac & CheeseYou can’t have turkey without mashed potatoes, right?
I was never a mashed potato fan until I made up these Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes. I totally love these. They are creamy, buttery (boy, are they buttery) and with a subtle tang from the cream cheese.

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

If you want to go a little different, you can’t beat these Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables. The potatoes and veggies get all crispy on the outside and all soft and tender inside. So, so good.

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

I was never a cold pasta salad sort of a person until I made up this Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad a few years ago. It’s great during the holidays for people who may want something a little lighter (and with no meat in it, lol) but still full of flavor.Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad
I have a major thing for Winter squashes. To me, they stand so far above the ubiquitous Summer squashes. I took one of my favorites here and stuffed it to come up with Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries. This is a fantastic addition to the holiday meal or a great light entree on it’s own.

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

You can’t have Thanksgiving dinner without cranberry sauce, right? While I admit to a secret love for the kind that slithers out of the can with a loud plop, I also love homemade cranberry sauce and make a large batch every year. My Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce is a perfect foil for all the rich dishes you’ll be serving. The brandy is completely optional so don’t let that turn you away from it. Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce

Now we come to the breads. I’m not normally a big one for breads, but hot and fresh on the holidays? I tend to go for them more at that time. And these Angel Biscuits have become a family favorite. Since they have baking powder in them as well as yeast, they are fairly foolproof, which is great for the less experienced cooks out there.

Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

The rolls I have been making for years are these Oatmeal Yeast Rolls. They are so fluffy and soft; perfect hot spread with butter or later as a mini turkey sandwich (Yes, I know this is a bad photo. The post is an old one, when my photography skills were sub-par, to say the least. The rolls however, are amazingly good)

Oatmeal Rolls

Oatmeal Rolls

I love to make a few loaves of bread for Thanksgiving as well as rolls. They are so good with dinner and make fantastic sandwiches the next day. I particularly love to make my Loaded Baked Potato Bread, The flavors in it go wonderfully with a turkey sandwich!

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Here in the south, a lot of people like to make cornbread to go with dinner, even on the holidays. My Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread is a favorite. It’s fluffy, not at all dry like so many cornbreads can be, with just a touch of sweetness.

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Then, of course, we have the part of dinner that everyone looks forward to; dessert! And man, you know I have some desserts to share with you! I have to start with the classics, of course, so here is my favorite- my Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie. This one is posted with a really good cornmeal crust, but you can use your favorite crust. Just make sure it’s a deep dish one. Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie In A Cornmeal Crust
That pumpkin pie tends to be my husbands favorite. Mine however will always be Pecan Pie. I love it slightly warmed with heavy cream poured over it. So bad for me, but so delicious!Deep Dish Pecan Pie

The last few years, my favorite pecan pie has had to vie with this Cranberry Apple Cake. I can’t say enough good things about this cake. It’s absolutely delicious and I can’t imagine the Thanksgiving meal without it now. It’s sweet, tangy, crispy, just a wonderful dessert that I look forward to all year.

Cranberry Apple Cake

Cranberry Apple Cake

If you want a classic (not to mention, heavenly chocolate goodness πŸ˜€ ) you’ll want to make this wonderful Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing This is a favorite with pretty much all age groups, and even those people who say Thanksgiving should be all about the pies. I’m not even normally a cake person and I love it!

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

If you want to do a different apple dessert, my Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce would be a great choice. It’s easy to throw together the day before you need it and then just warm up the sauce when ready to cut and serve. Again, I’m not huge on cakes, which is why if you see me posting one, you know it MUST be good.

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Or maybe you prefer a classic apple dessert? I find myself going for this Old Fashioned Apple Crisp all year round, but it’s a delicious choice on Thanksgiving!Old Fashioned Apple Crisp 2

I have a couple of desserts for you that are a bit more elegant, plus not as heavy. The first is one I love; my Elegant And Easy Lemon Almond Cake. This cake is light and filled with the flavor of almond and lemon; perfect for the family members who want a little something for dessert, but don’t want the heavier sweets.

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

The other one is one of my more recent creations- these Skillet Pears With Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce. These are wonderful if you have a smaller gathering. The pears end up tender and juicy and the caramel sauce is fantastic.Skillet Pears With An Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce 9

So, what to do with leftovers once Thanksgiving is over? When you tire of just making a plate of leftovers, I have some things you can do with some of them. If the title says chicken, obviously you can sub in that leftover turkey staring you in the face.

We love Mexican food in my house. Yes, I know that much of what we all call Mexican food has been totally Americanized, but it’s still delicious, so who cares? One of my family’s favorites are these Cheesy Chicken (Turkey) And Chorizo Enchiladas. They have the perfect mix of creamy, spicy and cheesy. I make them all year round, but they are a perfect way to use up leftovers.Cheesy Chicken And Chorizo Enchiladas 2

Everyone makes soup after Thanksgiving. But I have one here that doesn’t need to have you simmering stock for hours on end. I can eat a boatload of my Quick And Easy Turkey, Bacon And Cheese Chowder. This is comfort food at its best and it doesn’t have to cook for hours.Quick & Easy Turkey, Bacon & Cheese Chowder

Along the Mexican lines again, I almost always make a pan of White Chicken (Turkey) Enchiladas in the week after Thanksgiving. These are soooo darn good and everyone scarfs them down.

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

You may still have some turkey left even after those (I know I will; I always buy too much!) so my Cheaters Easy Chicken (Turkey) And Dumplings never fails me. It’s warming, comforting and filling and tastes great!

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

If you have leftover cranberry sauce (and you know you will), make a loaf of my Pumpkin Cranberry Bread. It’s an easy way to use up some of those leftovers and it makes a yummy breakfast or light snack.Easy Pumpkin Cranberry Breadthanksgiving

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Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

Ever have one of those meals where you are running around like proverbial headless chicken, trying to make a nice dinner, and yet still, you do 456 things incorrectly while cooking? Please tell me you have evenings like that. If nothing else, lie to me. I’m cool with that.

I made fried chicken for dinner tonight. Ultimately, it was fine, but the burner I prefer to use seems to be having hissy fits lately and has no medium temp. It’s either high enough that the food (in this case, the fried chicken) is somewhat burned on the outside and half raw inside or the oil temp is too low and the chicken ends up greasy. Yes, yes, I know, I could just move to another burner, but one, I LIKE the left hand side and two, that seems defeatist. Please don’t ask me why I stick with it and have food come out poorly, because I have no answer for that other than orneriness.

Then, the socket that I plugged the rice cooker into decided to go on the fritz and it wasn’t until the rest of dinner was done that I realized that the rice had never cooked. I had to plug it in elsewhere and try again. So, now we have 3 cups of cooked rice because no one wanted any by the time they finished the rest of dinner.

One part that turned out wonderfully was these biscuits. I have a lot of friends who aren’t comfortable using yeast and if you fall into that category yourself, these are the biscuits you want to try. They use both yeast and baking powder, so are virtually foolproof, and are so light and fluffy. These come together so easily; you don’t need a mixer of any kind. A couple hours chilling time, bake, and you have a pan or two of amazingly delicious biscuits. These are fantastic plain, or with butter and jam.

You know the drill…. πŸ™‚

Angel Biscuits

  • 1/2 cup warm water (between 105 and 112 degrees)
  • 1 envelope yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 5 cups flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 5 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (just plain old salt; nothing fancy)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup cold shortening, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, sliced thin
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  1. In a small bowl, combine the warm water, yeast and one teaspoon sugar. Stir and let sit for five minutes. it should get foamy and bubbly. If it doesn’t, your yeast is dead; use a different pack.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
  3. Use a pastry blender to cut in the cold shortening and butter until the mixture is crumbly with pieces of butter ranging from pea to nickel sized. Pour in the yeast mix and the buttermilk, all at once. then stir until the dough is thoroughly moistened and you can mash it together into a ball.
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic and put it in the fridge for at least 2 hours and up to 24.
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 400 and lightly butter two 10 inch cast iron skillets (or a buttered baking dish). Dump dough out onto a lightly floured board. Pat into a 1 inch thick circle; fold in half; repeat process twice.
  6. Finally, pat or roll the dough into a 3/4 inch thick round. Cut the dough with 2 inch biscuit cutters. You can use smaller or larger cutters, but adjust your cooking time to suit.
  7. Place the biscuits, sides touching, in the prepared pans. Brush with half the melted butter.
  8. Bake at 400 for 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the pans once during baking, until the tops are golden brown. Brush with the rest of the melted butter and serve.

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Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

Streusel Topped Cinnamon Rolls With A Creamy Vanilla Drizzle

Streusel Topped Cinnamon Rolls With A Creamy Vanilla Drizzle

Streusel Topped Cinnamon Rolls With A Creamy Vanilla Drizzle



You ladies and gentleman know I love you to pieces (preferably small, easy to vacuum pieces. Just sayin’. I hate messes.), but no long post today. It’s one of those rare days where my silly factor is taking a nap. Now if I could just get my body to follow suit. πŸ™‚

I wanted to play around with the ubiquitous cinnamon roll. Why? Because I can and because have you ever known me to make ANYTHING the “normal” way? So I added streusel. …………….

Why is it that I don’t see surprise on even one face? Here I thought that my usage of streusel would come as a shock!

I also added a bit more richness (cause cinnamon rolls just AREN’T rich enough typically, right?) by adding a layer of butter into the dough. It’s nothing to be fearful of doing; it’s not quite as if you’re making croissant dough or any other type of touchy dough. This is simply one layer of butter, two folds of the dough and rolling and voila; JUST enough to add a touch more layer to the rolls, similar to, but not as layered as those flaky layer biscuits from a can that every single human alive loves to peel into as many layers as possible.

This is an easy yeast dough; not temperamental at all. Since it is butter and egg rich, it takes a while to rise so don’t stress it when it hasn’t risen in 45 minutes or so as many doughs do.

The finished rolls are rich and tender, but surprisingly not too sweet. If you like a sweeter roll, either add more cinnamon sugar as the filling or maybe sprinkle some on top of the rolls before putting on the streusel. Personally though, I think they are fine as is. You have the soft fluffy roll, the sweet cinnamon sugar filling, all topped with crunchy streusel and then finished with a creamy glaze.

You know the drill…

Streusel Topped Cinnamon Rolls With A Creamy Vanilla Drizzle

  • Cinnamon Roll Dough-
  • 2 packets dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (about 110 to 115 degrees. No hotter or you’ll kill your yeast.)
  • 1 cup milk, warmed to 115 degrees (it’s ok if it is a COUPLE of degrees more or less, but again, no more that that)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt (please don’t omit. I have people write me and ask why I put salt in baked goods. Beyond boosting flavor, it also tends to act as a stabilizer to the yeast)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 3 eggs, room temp
  • 5 to 5 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cool, but not refrigerator cold; let sit out for about 30 minutes (no, this isn’t a typo. This is for the added layer. Feel free to omit it if you just want regular cinnamon rolls.)
  • Filling-
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • Streusel-
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and sliced thin
  • Glaze
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons milk (will vary depending on how thin you want your glaze)
  1. Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water. Let sit for about five minutes. The yeast will begin to foam and get bubbly. In the bowl of a stand mixer (you can do this all by hand or with a strong hand mixer, but both will take more arm strength. I love my stand mixer, lol), combine the milk, sugar, salt, room temp butter and the eggs. Use the paddle hook to blend well.
  2. Put the dough hook on now. Stir in the dissolved yeast and 2 1/2 cups of the flour. Beat until it is a ragged looking mass. Add in the flour, one cup at a time, and let the machine knead each cup in before adding another. Continue letting the mixer knead it until it is a smooth, silky cohesive dough that still has a very slight tackiness to it. It took me 5 1/4 cups but it may take you a bit more or less.
  3. Lightly oil a large bowl. Dump the dough into the bowl. Turn it to coat both sides with the oil, then cover with a clean cloth and set in a warm place to rise. I usually turn my oven on for about 45 seconds, then turn it right back off and place the bowl on a cookie sheet in there. Let the dough rise until it is roughly doubled in size. This will take anywhere from an hour to two hours.
  4. While the dough rises, make the butter layer. Cut the butter into three equal pieces. Lay them on a sheet of wax paper, then cover with another sheet. Use a rolling pin to gently beat them down into a flatter piece. You may have to scoosh them back together a couple of times. Once they are mushed somewhat (I know; such technical terms I’m using today), use the rolling pin to roll them into a flat layer of butter. Take this and place it flat in the freezer while the dough rises.
  5. Now go ahead and make your filling and streusel. For the filling, simply combine the sugar and cinnamon. Voila; filling.
  6. For the streusel, combine all the dry ingredients. Use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour.sugar mixture. When it has large clumps, put down the pastry cutter and get your clean hands in there. It’s the best way to make a streusel. Just rub your fingers together in the mix, picking up, rubbing, rinse, repeat, until you have a nice crumbly streusel with some large pieces and some small. Set it in the fridge for now.
  7. When the dough is ready, lightly flour a large board or clean counter. Punch down the risen dough. Dump it out onto the floured board and knead it a handful of times, just to smooth it out. Roll the dough out into a 18 by 12 rectangle (this does NOT have to be exact.). Get the butter out of the freezer and peel off one sheet of the waxed paper. Place it butter side down onto the dough. Peel off the other sheet. Now fold the dough into thirds, as if you were folding a letter to fit into an envelope.
  8. Let the dough rest for five minutes. Now, reroll it (it’s going to be harder to roll now. You just added frozen butter into it, lowering the dough temp considerably) into an 18 by 12 rectangle again. Fold it into thirds one more time. Let it rest five minutes. Now roll it into a 26 by 12 rectangle.
  9. Brush the melted butter evenly over the dough. Sprinkle the sugar/cinnamon mix evenly over the top of the butter.
  10. Going from one of the long sides, slowly and carefully roll the dough into a log. Try to keep it as tight as possible so that you don’t end up with cinnamon rolls with big gaping holes through them.
  11. Cut the ragged end of of each end of the roll.
  12. Use a sharp knife ( or thread, which is how I do it) to cut the remainder of the logΒ  into 19 pieces. I know; strange amount, but that’s how it ended up πŸ˜›
  13. Butter a 13×9 inch pan and a 9 inch round cake pan. Place 12 of the rolls, about an inch apart in rows of three, in the 13×9 inch pan. Place the other 7 around the edges of the cake pan, not touching. Sprinkle evenly with the streusel, patting it down gently to help it adhere. Places the pans in a warm place (not the oven this time) to rise. Let rise until they are roughly double in size, about 45 minutes to an hour.
  14. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  15. When the rolls have risen. Place them on a middle rack in the 350 degree oven. Bake until they are puffy and golden brown and the streusel is also browned, about 25 to 35 minutes. Remove form the oven and let cool in the pans, set on a rack.
  16. When they are totally cool, make your glaze. Simply whisk together all the glaze ingredients until creamy. Drizzle over the tops of the cooled rolls.

Streusel Topped Cinnamon Rolls With A Creamy Vanilla Drizzle.jpg 1

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Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks

Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks

Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks



I think if it were left up to the guys in my house, every day would be a day devoted to seeing how many carbs and how much cheese they could stuff into their bodies, veggies be damned. I on the other hand would happily live on veggies and meat, with dessert afterward of course. I love cheese, but I’ve said before I prefer my carbs in sweet form usually. Thus why this blog is overwhelmingly sweets and not non-sweets.

The rare times we can manage to go out for dinner, they love places that have pizza, with Gatti-Town being a favorite…unlimited pizza, pasta, breadsticks and then games. What more does any male need, right? I am pretty sure that when the cooks see them go up for their 14th plate of cheesy carbs, they groan and wish they worked somewhere else. I’m never worth the price of the buffet myself. I usually manage two slices of pizza and a saladΒ  and that’s about it.

Right now, it’s a rough patch financially, so I wanted to give the guys a treat I knew they’d love that we can’t afford to get out. What better way than one of their favorite buffet foods, made fresh at home?

Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks

Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks

I think they were happy with these. I mean, really… cheese…bacon. Bacon is one of Gods gifts to mankind πŸ˜€ I managed to eat one and it was quite yummy. I hid one for myself for later too, hehe. They inhaled the rest of them for an early dinner. Not traditional, not even particularly nutritious, but my guys enjoyed the treat.

These are extremely easy to make. it’s a SIMPLE yeast dough you can do in a stand mixer (or even by hand if you want). Then you roll it out into a rough rectangle, cut it, let it rise, sprinkle with the goodies, then bake and eat the cheesy, carby goodness. Nuthin’ to it. You can add a bit of thinly sliced red onion to this or a bit of green pepper… just use your imagination and put what makes you happy.

You know the drill….

Mrs. Cupcake… who feels the need for a fresh salad now

Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks

  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (about 112 to 117 degrees)
  • 4 to 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • olive oil (or just use some of the bacon drippings)
  • 8 ounces bacon, cooked to chewy crispness and crumbled
  • 8 ounces Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 8 ounces mild cheddar, shredded
  1. Sprinkle the yeast over the 1/4 cup warm water in a bowl; stir to mix then let it sit for about five minutes. The mixture should start to get foamy.
  2. Place 4 cups of the flour, the butter, sugar, salt and 1 1/4 cups water in the bowl of a stand mixer (again, you can mix by hand. It will take longer, but it’s definitely doable). Pour the yeast mix in and beat on low speed, with the dough hook, for about five minutes, until the dough comes together in a slightly sticky ball.Β  If it is too sticky to work with, add in another 1/4 cup of flour, then mix again until the dough comes together in a ball.
  3. Grease a large baking sheet or cookie sheet. Dump the dough out onto a lightly floured board or counter and give it a few quick kneads just to bring it together well. Roll it out into a more or less rectangular size (it doesn’t have to be perfect- you’ll just be laying it out on a baking sheet) of about 15 x 11. Carefully roll it up halfway over the rolling pin or your hand and transfer it to the baking sheet. Stretch out any wrinkles you may have made in it during the transfer.
  4. Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to score the dough into long strips, then again down the middle to cut the strips in half. Don’t separate them, just leave it like that. Let rise in a warm place until puffy and almost doubled, about 45 minutes. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees while it rises.
  5. Brush dough lightly with either olive oil or bacon drippings. Sprinkle with the garlic powder, onion powder and salt. Sprinkle the cheese on top of that, then the bacon.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees until the edges are golden brown and the cheese is browned and bubbly, about 25 minutes.
  7. Let rest for about 5 minutes, then use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the breadsticks through the score lines you made earlier.
  8. Serve to hungry males with pizza sauce. Take in the accolades and cheese scented kisses.

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Gooey Cheese & Bacon Soft Breadsticks 3

Cinnamon Sticky Buns

 

Cinnamon Sticky Buns

Cinnamon Sticky Buns



I always get confused when I see how nervous some people are about the idea of working with yeast. I mean no disrespect by that. I also get confused by at least 948 other things every day. It’s just that I started making yeast breads and pastries when I was still a fairly novice cook. Now I’ll look at recipes that seem pretty straightforward and they’ll have warnings about “Once you master this, you can move on to harder things like danish pastry and croissants”. Hmmmm… one of the first things I ever made were homemade croissants. I didn’t know that, as a beginner, I wasn’t supposed to be able to make them or that I was supposed to be scared to even try. I could read, therefore I could bake.

Point being, that’s what I want for all of you. If you can read and have any cooking ability at all (I qualify that because if opening a can of Chef Boy-Ar-Dee is beyond your skill level and you only come to blogs to send the recipes to your mom, I make no promises πŸ˜› ), you can make yeast raised baked goods with no problem. They take a little more patience is all and a little more with certain things, like the temps of liquids. Too hot and you can kill the yeast. Too cold and it won’t activate at all. But all you need is an instant read thermometer and you’re good to go. Bake enough and you won’t even need that. You’ll be able to test the temp with your finger and know if it’s right.

I first made these sticky buns in about 1990 or so and have been making them ever since. More or less. It occurred to me the other day that I have never made them for my husband and he and I have been together over seven years. Seven years with no sticky buns!!? What was I thinking?! So it was time. And I am so glad I did. Tender, slightly sweet pastry with a buttery, sweet and cinnamony filling, all smothered in a sticky, teenie tiny bit chewy glaze. These are wonderful fresh out of the oven. These are wonderful room temp. These are just wonderful; period. These are done with a stand mixer and I’ll give directions that way, but you can always, always do yeast doughs by hand.

You know the drill…. πŸ™‚ and no fear is your motto!! Well, that and “I’m going to eat a pan of sticky buns all by myself!”

Cinnamon Sticky Buns

  • dough- 2 packages dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (between 110 to 115 degrees)
  • 1 cup milk, warmed to about 120 degrees
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 3 eggs, room temp
  • 5 to 6 cups flour (it will vary each and every time due to weather, humidity, moisture content of the flour, etc)
  • filling-
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • glaze-
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar (whichever you prefer; I like to use dark)
  • 3 tablespoons dark corn syrup (this provides the “sticky” part; don’t omit it. Corn syrup is NOT the same thing as HFCS)
  • 3/4 cup lightly toasted chopped pecans
  1. Sprinkle the 2 packs of yeast over the warm water. Let sit for 3 minutes or so to dissolve. When you go to get it, it should be bubbling and foamy. If not, your yeast may be dead and you should probably use different yeast. Better to do that than waste an entire recipes worth of ingredients.
  2. Combine the milk, sugar, salt, butter, vanilla extract and eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle. Mix on low just long enough to combine. Add in the yeast and 2 1/2 cups of flour. Change over to the dough hook and beat until smooth.Β  Add in 2 1/2 cups more flour. Beat until it is a shaggy mass. It may still be somewhat sticky. Add in another 1/4 cup of flour at a time if needed and beat to incorporate. You want a final dough that is SLIGHTLY tacky, but doesn’t leave dough on your fingers when you press into it. This batch took a full six cups of flour for me. Other times, I’ve used about 5 to 5 1/2 cups.
  3. Turn your speed up to 2 or 3 and let the dough hook do the kneading work for you. Knead for 6 to 8 minutes; work that gluten! πŸ˜›
  4. Turn dough out into a lightly oiled bowl. Turn to coat both sides, then cover the bowl with a clean towel and set in a warm place to rise. Let the dough rise until it is about doubled in size.
  5. Meanwhile, make your glaze. Combine all the glaze ingredients and combine until totally mixed and no streaks of butter show. Divide mixture between 2 9 inch cake pans, using your fingers to pat it all the way across the bottoms of the pan. Sprinkle with the toasted pecans. Set aside and start your oven preheating to 350 degrees.
  6. When the dough has risen, punch it down and turn out onto a lightly floured board or counter. Roll it into about a 24×12 rectangle. Don’t stress if it’s not perfect.
  7. Break up the 1/2 cup softened butter and scatter it across the dough. Use your fingers to spread it all over the dough, right to the edges. Sprinkle with the 2/3 cup sugar and then the cinnamon.
  8. Roll the dough tightly from a long end into a cylinder. Trim off the uneven edges (trust me; you’ll have uneven edges) and do what you want with them. You can bake them up in a small pan or I have heard that dogs adore raw dough. Go figure. Cut the dough into 16 pieces with a sharp knife. Lay the slices in the prepared pans, 8 per pan. Let rise again until just about doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes or so.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees until the tops of the rolls are golden brown and you can see the glaze bubbling around them, about 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes to set the glaze somewhat, then invert the pan onto a rimmed plate or serving dish.
  10. These are best warm and fresh, but if you don’t use them all, just wrap them tightly and store on the counter. You can reheat them easily in the microwave. For the record, you can let them rise in the pan, then freeze a pan for another time if two pans is too much. Just wrap the pan tightly with foil and freeze. When you want to bake them, let them sit in the fridge overnight to thaw and bake them as directed above. They may take a bit longer is all.

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Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Loaded Baked Potato Bread



I love fresh yeast breads. Store bought, not so much. I’ll see one that sounds good; some “Artisan” type (also known as “we slapped the artisan label on this so we could charge you more”), bring it home, eat half a slice, say “meh”, then forget about it and the kids eat it. But most homemade breads I can eat my weight in… and trust me, that’s a LOT of bread. Russ decided to try his hand at bread baking the other day and I have to say, he did well for a first timer. He made whole wheat, which can be tricky for an experienced baker and he did fine.Β  And this is a man for whom cooking means throwing a frozen burrito into the microwave. Seriously. When I met the man, he was practically living on frozen burritos and Doritos. It was a sad sad state of affairs. But I’ve since fattened him up and spoiled him for crap foods like that.

So, since he made his whole wheat bread, I had to follow up; he got me craving fresh bread. I wasn’t sure what to make; obviously not whole wheat. So I went the decadent direction. Go figure…. me…making something not so healthy. Whoda thunk it?

I have made potato bread for years. I have always loved that it’s a slightly softer bread, not as crusty as some others.Β  But even there, I wanted to play some. So I finally decided I wanted to load this bread up the same way I load up a baked potato. So I threw bacon, sliced green onions and cheddar cheese in it, as well as replacing some of the potato water I usually use with milk and with sour cream. And know what? This bread is outstanding! This is one of those times when I’m like, “YES! Janet, you knocked this one out of the park!” This has a nice tight crumb, a tender crust that doesn’t turn into a pile of crumbs when you slice it and it has a enough “holdability” (yes, that is now a word.) to slice thinly enough to use for sandwiches. I mean; imagine this- a BLT on homemade bread that has bacon and cheese in it. Need I say more?

This makes three loaves of bread, so either plan on sharing or freezing or if you’re better at math than I am, cut the recipe. I would estimate that if one were to cut this in half, you would get two 8 inch loaves. As it stands, you get 9 inch loaves. But it holds up well thanks to the potato. That helps it stay fresher longer. And like I said, this is amazing as a sandwich bread. This bread takes longer to rise than some, so don’t stress if it hasn’t risen a mile in ten minutes after you get it into the pans. Mine took a full two hours to rise enough to bake.Β  But keep in mind that as it sits and rises slowly, it is also getting a better texture and flavor. Also, made during the warmer months, it may rise quicker. My house is rather nippy.

You know the drill…. πŸ™‚

Mrs. Cupcake- whose blood has now been replaced with yeast. And bacon.

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 7 1/2 to 8 cups flour
  • 1 lb good quality bacon, cooked until just crisp and crumbled
  • 4 tablespoons of the the bacon drippings
  • 2 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and get out three 9 inch bread pans.Add the cut up potatoes and one teaspoon salt to the 4 cups of water in a medium pot. Cook until the potatoes are tender then remove the potatoes from the water, reserving two cups of the cooking water (just dump any extra or if it isn’t a full two cups, add water to get up to two cups). Mash the potatoes well to make lump free, then let cool for about ten minutes. You should have about one cup of mashed potatoes.
  2. Add the one cup of milk and half a cup of sour cream to the reserved potato water. Whisk until smooth. Warm in the microwave in 20 second increments until it has reached a temp between 105 and 112. Sprinkle the packet of yeast over the top of it and give it a light stir. Let sit for about 5 minutes. It should be looking somewhat foamy by then.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attached (you can do this by hand with a wooden spoon, but it will be an arm workout), combine the yeast mixture, the mashed potatoes, the butter, the tablespoon salt, the sugar, the softened butter and one cup of the flour. Mix on low speed until thoroughly combined.
  4. When combined, add in 5 more cups of the flour and mix on fairly low speed (I used 2 on my mixer) until it has come together into a sticky dough. Add more flour, half a cup at a time, until you have a slightly sticky and tacky dough. It shouldn’t leave dough all your fingers if you lightly push a finger into it, but it should feel pretty sticky to the touch. This took about 7 3/4 cups of flour for me.
  5. Let the mixer continue to knead the dough for five to seven minutes, scraping it down when needed if it crawls up the hook. Pour in the bacon, cheese and green onions and let the mixer combine them into the dough.
  6. Dump the dough out onto a lightly floured board or counter and give the dough a couple of quick kneads.
  7. Using the reserved bacon drippings, lightly grease the loaf pans; don’t use all of it- you’ll be brushing the tops of the loaves with it, too.Divide the dough into three equal pieces. Shape each piece into a loaf and put into the prepared pans. Brush the tops with more of the reserved bacon drippings. Let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in bulk. Since this uses just one pack of yeast for three loaves, it’s NOT a quick riser. So don’t worry if it hasn’t risen in like half an hour or so. It will get there. Mine took a full two hours to rise.
  8. When ready, put the loaves in the 350 degree oven. Bake for 25 minutes, then if desired, open the oven and quickly sprinkle some shredded cheese on top of the loaves. Continue to bake for about another 15 to 20 minutes, until the loaves are golden brown on top. If you’re not sure, poke an instant read thermometer into the center of a loaf. It should read at about 190 degrees.
  9. Let cool in the pan for five minutes, then turn out onto a rack to finish cooling.

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Apple Cinnamon Gooey German Butter Cake

Cinnamon Apple Gooey German Butter Cake

Cinnamon Apple Gooey German Butter Cake




I think I’ve mentioned before (probably many times. I’m getting old and forgetful. Hey, did I mention that I’m getting old and forgetful?) that I was lucky enough to live in Germany for three years in the mid 80’s. Yes, I’m well aware that many of you were barely crawling in the mid 80’s. Just get me my Geritol and call me Granny.

I had my first two children while there and when my oldest was little, one of my favorite things to do was to go to the local Konditorei and by a pastry or nine two. My sons favorite was always one that was similar to American Mallomars but 900 times better. It had a thin wafer bottom covered with a mound of fresh soft marshmallow then coated in chocolate. It was delicious.

My favorites however were anything gooey, messy and preferably with crumbs on or in it. No way to go wrong with gooey and/or streusel, now is there?

German Butter Cake is one of those desserts that you can also serve for breakfast based simply on the fact that it resembles a coffee cake/crumb cake and it is a yeast based cake. Anything with yeast means it’s a bread and you canΒ always serve bread for breakfast. This gooey cake is, as I said, yeast based instead of baking powder, but don’t let that scare you away. It’s extremely easy to toss together. The most time consuming part of this recipe is peeling, slicing and sauteing the apples. The rest is pretty much wham, bam, thank you ma’am.

This isn’t the prettiest cake but it’s delicious. I covered the base with a layer of sweet buttery sauteed apples before I coated it all with the crunchy, crumbly topping. The topping stays partly gooey, as it’s supposed to, but it also get a nice crunchy, crackly edge.

Serve this as it or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. You’ll devour it no matter what. πŸ™‚

You know the drill… git to cookin’!

Apple Cinnamon Gooey German Butter Cake

  • Cake-
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 packet dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup milk, warmed to between 110-115 degrees
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon each of cloves, cardamom and nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Apples-
  • 4 small Granny Smith (or other tart) apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Topping-
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon Fiori De Sicilia flavoring (optional. If you don’t have it, don’t sweat it)
  • 2 eggs
  1. Start your apples first so they have time to cool. In a medium pot, melt your butter. Add in the sliced apples and cinnamon. Cover the pot and saute the apples over low heat until the apples are crisp tender.
  2. Toss in the sugar, mix well and crank the heat up to medium. With the cover off, saute until they start to caramelize, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  3. Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk. Let sit for five minutes.
  4. For the cake, in the bowl of a stand mixer (this can all be done by hand or hand mixer if need be), combine the butter, sugar and salt. Mix on low speed until creamy. Add in the milk mixture, then the egg and vanilla extract, then the flour and spices.
  5. Put your dough hook attachment on and let it knead the dough for a minute or two. It is not a dry dough, so expect it to be a bit sticky and tacky. Remove it to a small bowl and let it rise until double, about one hour.
  6. In the stand mixer bowl with the beater hook, combine the butter, flour and sugar. Mix on low for a minute; just to get it all combined.
  7. Add in the eggs, vanilla and Fiori De Sicilia (if using). Beat at low speed until you have a mixture that rather resemble s crumbly cake batter. Set aside.
  8. Spray a 13×9 inch pan with cooking spray. Punch the dough down and then press it onto the bottom and half an inch up the sides of the pan. Pour the cooled apples and any saucy mixture in the pot over the top of the base. Use your fingers to arrange the apples so they cover the bulk of the dough.
  9. Carefully spread the topping over the dough, taking care to not move the apples all over the place. After this is done, let the cake alone for 20 minutes or so so that it can rise a bit. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  10. bake the cake at 375 degrees for about 20 to 25 minutes, just until the base is cooked through and nicely golden brown. The topping will still look gooey. Thus the name πŸ˜›
  11. Let cool for about 20 minutes before trying to cut it or it will just ooze everywhere and you’ll end up with half the topping in the pan rather than on the cake.

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Savory Filled Breads- (Pepperoni Cheese & Sun Dried Tomato/Basil)

Pepperoni Cheese Bread and Tomato/Basil Bread

Pepperoni Cheese Bread and Tomato/Basil Bread



I think we’ve come to the conclusion by now that one of my baking loves is yeast bread, be they Sweet or Savory or Let’s do sweet again. I just love homemade yeasty, soft, fluffy breads or baked goods. Store bought ones rarely are as good, though I admit to trying them to find out when I need a ‘fix”. Wal-Mart carries a pepperoni cheese bread that is sufficient when I am craving that type, but I always just KNEW I could do better. Theirs isn’t suitable for sandwiches because it’s fairly flat and it always had this slightly off sourish taste, like it was a confused sourdough bread with an attitude problem. I had made filled breads in the past but usually more in a calzone sort of a way, as a meal not as a sandwich bread with a filling. SO I had to try. Of course. And I am pretty pleased with it.Β  I needed to roll it a bit tighter, but otherwise, it’s really yummy. Somehow, I doubt it’s going to make it to sandwiches though. Between two teen boys, my husband and our five year old, both loaves are almost gone. But that’s ok; it gives me an excuse to make more.

This is easy as can be if you’ve made yeast bread even a couple of times before. If not, this is still a recipe that’s easy enough for a beginner. I just took my basic honey white bread recipe and changed it enough to make it more savory. The main tip? Make sure you roll TIGHTLY or you will end up with loaves that have a hole going through them as you see in mine. Still tasty as all git out, but not as pretty or as useful for sandwiches. Also, if these filling ideas don’t work for you, play around. Just don’t use anything too wet and don’t fill with too much or it will burst as it bakes. And if you don’t have a stand mixer, you can always do the mixing and kneading by hand. It can be fun to do it the old fashioned way. πŸ™‚ And have your ingredients ready to go. I have been known to have an overflowing cup of blooming yeast because I am waiting on the milk I forgot to heat up to finish cooling.

You know the drill… πŸ™‚

Savory Filled Breads- (Pepperoni Cheese & Sun Dried Tomato/Basil)

  • 1/2 cup warm water (about 110 degrees or so; up to 115 is fine)
  • 2 packages dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (NOT skim), heated and then cooled down to between 110 and 115 degrees
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 5 to 6 cups all purpose or bread flour (amount needed will vary- I used 5 cups for this recipe in a hot, humid house)
  • 2 tablespoons dried Italian Seasoning, crushed in your hand to release the flavors
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
  • For the pepperoni cheese-
  • 4 ounces sliced pepperoni
  • 4 ounces shredded Mozzarella or Fontina cheese
  • 2 ounces shredded Parmesan cheese
  • For the Sun Dried Tomato/Basil-
  • 1 cup of julienned fresh basil
  • 4 ounces of dry sun dried tomatoes (if you use the kind packed in oil, dry them thoroughly)
  • 4 ounces Fontina cheese
  • 3 ounces shredded Parmesan
  • To top both breads-
  • Shredded Parmesan and/or Fontina
  1. Grease 2 9×5 inch loaf pans. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add the yeast and sugar to the 1/2 cup of warm water. Stir and allow it to sit for about five minutes to activate the yeast.
  3. To the bowl of your stand mixer, with the paddle attachment on, add the milk, honey, butter and yeast. Mix on low speed just until blended.Change over to the dough hook. Add 2 cups of the flour, the Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and egg yolks. Mix on low speed for five minutes.
  4. Keeping the mixer on low, add two more cups of flour. Turn the mixer off and scrape the sides of the bowl down. Raise the mixer speed to 3 and let the hook work it until the dough comes away form the side of the bowl. Feel the dough and if it’s still sticky, add more flour, 1/2 cup at a time. You do NOT want a stiff, hard dough.
  5. Knead on the speed of 2 for 6 to 8 minutes, until you have a nice glossy, just slightly tacky dough.
  6. Dump the dough into an oiled bowl, turn it to make sure both sides of the dough have oil on them, then cover with a towel or loose plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes to an hour.
  7. When doubled, punch the dough down and divide into two equal pieces. Take one out and leave the other covered until you are done with the first. Dump the one onto a very lightly floured board and knead just to get it into a ball.
  8. Roll the dough out into a rectangle, approximately 8×12 inches. Sprinkle your fillings (for whichever you’re doing first) evenly over the top of the dough. For the pepperoni, lay it out on the dough, don’t just toss it on there πŸ˜› .
  9. From the short end of the dough, roll it up, slowly and tightly. Pinch the seams shut with your fingers, using a LITTLE bit of water to help seal them if you need to. Fold the ends of the bread under lightly, seal them also and place in one of the prepared pans.
  10. Now do the same with the other half, also sprinkling on the fillings and rolling tightly.
  11. Let the dough rise until about an inch over the top of the pan, which should take about 45 minutes. Brush each loaf with olive oil or butter and sprinkle with shredded cheese.
  12. Bake at 350 until the loaves are golden brown and firm on top, about 35 to 40 minutes.
  13. Turn the bread out onto a rack and let cool completely, or as long as you can handle it until you just have to cut one of them πŸ˜›

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Soft, Fresh, Multi Grain Bread

Soft, Fresh Multi Grain Bread

Soft, Fresh Multi Grain Bread


I can just see many of you now. “Ewwwww, she said multi grain! That must mean its healthy and tastes like old cat litter!!” Fine, so maybe I’m transferring my own reaction to hearing the words multi grain. But I know SOME of you are like me. We hear those words and automatically close the page or go look for something made with heavy cream, tons of sugar and chocolate. Again, maybe that’s mainly me. No, no, nooooo, I KNOW others do it.

That said, I DO however like fresh breads. But even I know that ones made with all white flour have little to no nutritional value. They’re just empty (albeit extremely tasty) calories made up of carbs. But oh my, they are delicious. I have tried the store bought whole grain breads and it is nearly impossible t find one that doesn’t taste like cardboard. So I make my own. Until you try it, you can never know how tasty a FRESH loaf of whole grain bread is. Soft, fluffy (no, not as fluffy as white bread but nowhere near as dense as store bought cardboard multi grain bread. The only drawback with this bread is it doesn’t store well. It gets rather crumbly with age. But it rarely lasts long enough around here for that to be a problem. Sliced thin (if cutting for sandwiches, always wait until bread is totally cool before slicing), it makes great sandwiches. Sliced a bit thicker and slathered with butter and jam, this is a fantastic snack or side for a meal. We had it tonight with a yummy creamy turkey dumpling soup. Sooooo good together!

You know the drill… git to cookin’!

With this recipe, make sure to premeasure your grains and have them ready to go. It’s easy to get flustered and forget one or more when using this many different types of grain in one bread.

Multi Grain Bread

  • 3- 3 1/4 cups bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 packages dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rye flour (you can buy rye flour in fairly small bags and once you try this recipe, believe me, it won’t go to waste)
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup shelled sunflower seeds or pepitas, your choice
  • 2 tablespoons vital wheat gluten (optional but I recommend it. It helps make a typically dense loaf like this much lighter plus helps it keep better. You can find it with the flours and yeasts at the grocery store)
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ (if you want a touch more sweetness, feel free to use the honey wheat germ)
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine two cups of the bread flour, the salt and the yeast.
  2. Combine the rye flour, oats, cornmeal, sunflower seeds, vital wheat gluten if using and wheat germ in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a large microwave safe measuring cup, heat the water, milk, oil and molasses to between 120 degrees and 130 degrees.
  4. Add the warmed liquid to the flour mixture in the stand mixer bowl. Beat 2 minutes at low speed.
  5. Add in the combined grain mixture you set aside along with an additional 3/4 cup bread flour. Let the mixer combine and then knead this for about 5 minutes.
  6. Turn the mixer off and feel the dough. It should be just VERY slightly tacky to the touch, but your finger shouldn’t stick to it at all.
  7. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and knead for just a minute or so. Put into an oiled bowl and turn the dough to make sure all sides get oil on them.
  8. Cover with a clean towel and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 30 to 45 minutes.
  9. When risen, punch down and shape into two loaves. Put them into 2 well greased 9 inch loaf pans and again, let rise until nearly doubled in bulk. While they rise, preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  10. When risen, bake at 350 degrees until the loaves are golden brown and firm to the touch on top, about 20 to 25 minutes. Turn bread out onto a rack to cool for about one hour. I know, I know, you will end up slicing it while it’s still warm, but I have to at least try to pretend I don’t know this and that I think you’ll leave it to cool.

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Honey Oatmeal Wheat Bread

Honey Oatmeal Wheat Bread

Honey Oatmeal Wheat Bread


I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a huge store bought bread sort of a person. I prefer my carbs in junk food form, preferably with a label that says “Ben & Jerry” or “Brachs Juicy Berries Gummi Candy” (yes, I’m still addicted to those.) I DO however, love artisan breads, good bakery breads or homemade breads. In a nutshell? I’m a bread snob. Well, confession time, unless I’m having Chicago public school flashbacks and craving a ham sandwich on mushy store bought white bread spread with butter. Don’t judge.

So, all of that said, I rarely have the budget for the good artisan breads that a lot of grocery stores carry now and I don’t live near a bakery. So if I want good bread, I have to make it myself. I’ve been baking bread long enough now that I am able to play with recipes without ending up with a disaster so that’s what I did here. I took a recipe I’ve had for years for oatmeal bread/rolls and mixed it up a bit. The results were completely awesome! This bread tastes great, not as strongly flavored as whole wheat would be but not as bland as white bread. It has a mild nutty flavor from the oats and the wheat flour. And the texture is out of this world. It is soft, ALMOST but not quite as soft as store bought which will please the mushy bread addicts lol. Yet it has a nice chewy bite to it and a density to please those of us who like breads with more character. Another plus is that the wheat gluten keeps it fresh longer plus adds a bit to the texture. I have it listed as optional but you really really need to buy some. It’s inexpensive and worth getting.

You know the drill. πŸ™‚

Honey Oatmeal Wheat Bread

  • 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oatmealΒ  plus extra for sprinkling on the loaves
  • 2 tablespoons Vital Wheat Gluten, optional but highly recommended (you can find it in the flour aisle, usually on the top shelf. It contributes a LOT to bread texture and freshness so please buy some.)
  • 2 packs dry yeast (I use the Red Star Platinum yeast)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 cups milk, warmed to between 115 and 120 degrees (NO hotter)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup honey plus more for brushing on top of loaves
  • sea salt for sprinkling on top
  1. Lightly grease two 9 inch loaf pans and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the wheat flour, 4 1/2 cups of the bread flour, oatmeal, yeast and salt. Mix well on low speed.
  2. Combine the milk and butter in a measuring cup. Stir to melt the butter, then add in the warm water and the honey. Pour this over the flour mixture, and using the dough hook, mix on low speed until it all comes together as a dough. Knead for about 2 to 3 minutes on low. If the dough is still more than just a LITTLE bit sticky and tacky, add more flour, 1/2 cup at a time. Machine knead after each addition for a minute or so, then check stickiness again. You want a nice firm but not dry dough. Your finger should just barely stick to it and it should have a sheen rather like what a semi gloss paint looks like when dry.
  3. Turn the dough out into an oiled bowl, turning it once to make sure all sides get the oil on them. Cover with a clean towel and put somewhere warm to rise. I usually turn my oven to it’s lowest setting, then turn it off after about 2 minutes of preheating. That leaves it a nice warm 80 degrees or so which is a perfect rising temp. Let it rise until it is doubled in bulk, about 60 to 90 minutes.
  4. When it’s doubled, punch it down (that’s always the fun part hehe) and divide it into two equal pieces. Start your oven preheating to 350 degrees. Now you can go one of two ways.
  5. First way to shape your dough is free hand- just…well, shape it into a dough shape. Not hard and the pro of it is it leaves you with less seams to pinch shut. it’s usually how I shape my loaves. Con is it takes some time to learn to free hand shape and not have a misshapen loaf.
  6. Two is to roll or pat the dough out into about a 9 inch rectangle and then roll it up tightly and pinch shut the seams with a damp finger. Pro to that is a prettier loaf (unless you miss a seam like I did on the one loaf in the photo…oops), con is if you don’t roll tightly enough, you end up with a loaf that has a hole running through the middle.
  7. Either way you go, shape the dough into two loaves and place in the prepared pans.
  8. Warm up about 1/4 cup of honey until it’s liquidy. Brush it evenly over the two loaves. Sprinkle with some extra oats and then with some coarse grained (I use kosher, same kind you see on pretzels) salt. Let the bread rise again in a warm place (NOT in the preheating oven lol) for 30 minutes or until it is almost doubled in bulk
  9. Bake at 350 degrees until the bread is golden brown and crusty looking, about 45 to 55 minutes.
  10. Let cool in the pan for five minutes, then turn out onto a rack to finish cooling, though we all know half a loaf, at least, won’t make it to cooled before it gets eaten hehe.
  11. When cooled, what doesn’t get eaten can be stored in ziploc bags for a few days. I made mine 4 days ago and it’s still wonderfully soft and fresh. THAT is why you need to buy the vital wheat gluten. Trust me on this.

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