Entries Tagged 'BBA Challenge'



Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge: Lavash Crackers

Lavash Crackers Ready to Eat

Flatbread is the star of this week’s Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge post, and these lavash crackers were fun and easy to make, beautiful to look at, and absolutely delicious. I have tasted the soft version of lavash before, but was completely unfamiliar with crackers like these.  The dough is very similar to pita dough, but it is rolled thinner and baked longer than pita.  The crackers can be left plain or adorned with salt, seeds and/or spices – I chose to use everything.  While not quite as crisp as traditional American crackers, the flavor was outstanding and they would make a perfect accompaniment to your favorite dip or spread. Continue reading →

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Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge: Kaiser Rolls

Roast Pork Sandwich on Kaiser Roll

We’re back to the Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge! Today I’m sharing my experience with the 16th bread in the challenge:  Kaiser Rolls.  I enjoyed these rolls so much I’ve made them twice already!  Like many of the breads in the book, these rolls do take two days to make, but they aren’t difficult and I found that they were both easy and a lot of fun to shape.

Kaiser rolls, also called New York hard rolls or Vienna rolls, are known for the distinctive star pattern on the top of the roll.  The traditional method for achieving the classic kaiser roll shape requires a series of overlapping folds that intimidates me quite a bit. Luckily, the book offers a couple of other options for creating beautiful kaiser rolls. Continue reading →

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Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge: Italian Bread

Baked

The new year is about to begin and I’m determined to get back on track with The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge! I’ve fallen way behind many of my fellow BBA bakers, but the great thing about this challenge is that we each set our own pace, and even though I’ve fallen behind, I can pick right back up where I left off and continue working toward the goal of finishing all the breads in the book.  And since I am behind several of the others, there are plenty of people I can turn to for help or advice!

Today, I’m writing about the 15th bread in the challenge:  Italian Bread.  I actually baked and photographed this bread months ago, so bear with me as I try to remember the details of the process – luckily I took lots of photos.  One thing I do remember is the wonderful flavor of this bread.  I gave a loaf to my friend Caron for her birthday, and she shared a buttered slice of the still-warm bread with me in her kitchen.  There’s nothing like sharing bread and butter with a friend! Continue reading →

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Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge: French Bread

Baguette with Butter

So it turns out that I have fallen a bit behind on The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge.  Life doesn’t always cooperate with bread baking and blogging, and that’s the reason I’ve encouraged everyone to bake at their own pace and take breaks as needed.  Well my break is now over, my husband is home from Iraq, and I’m ready to jump back in and share some bread with you!

Bread #14 in the book is French Bread.  After the huge success of the focaccia, I was a little worried that my baguettes would disappoint.  I’ve never made a basic French bread, and it’s so easy to pick up great-tasting baguettes from our local bakeries, I wasn’t sure it would be worth the effort.  But, as usual, Peter Reinhart proved me wrong.  This bread wasn’t that difficult, and it had an amazing flavor! Continue reading →

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Herbed Focaccia from The Bread Baker’s Apprentice

Piece of Focaccia

Ok, let me come right out and say this.  This focaccia was the best I’ve ever tasted in my life.  Period.  Like many of the formulas in the book, this one takes two days to make.  And although it’s more labor and time-intensive than other focaccia recipes I’ve tried, I’m pretty sure it’s the only one I will ever make again.

This is the 13th bread I’ve made for The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge (with 31 more to come) and it has moved up to the top of my favorites list.  Honestly, I didn’t think I could love any bread more than the salami and cheese-filled Casatiello.  But I was wrong.  Foccacia, I love you. Continue reading →

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Homemade English Muffins

Toasted English Muffin

Have you ever thought about making English Muffins from scratch?  If not, maybe you should!  They are surprisingly easy and lots of fun to make.  You might not know this, but English Muffins are baked on a griddle rather than in the oven.  Since I am somewhat obsessed with watching things bake and have a tendency to plant myself on the kitchen floor in front of the oven glass, I love that these get baked on a griddle where I can get up close and personal!

I’ve made english muffins several times over the years, but this is my first time using Peter Reinhart’s recipe.  Yes, this is another installment from The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge and it’s another great one!  Although sourdough english muffins are my favorite, these plain white muffins were outstanding!  Like many of the bread formulas in the book, this one calls for buttermilk, and I think that’s what made them so great. Continue reading →

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Peter Reinhart on Bread

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BBA Challenge: Cherry Pecan Celebration Bread

Cut Celebration Loaf

And here comes number eleven!

That’s right, I’m still plugging away at The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge and the next bread up is Cranberry Walnut Celebration Bread.  But since Mr. Reinhart gave us the option of choosing different dried fruits and nuts, I decided to celebrate cherry season and use tart dried cherries and pecans in my bread.

Although it is definitely a gorgeous loaf worthy of a celebration, this bread was surprisingly easy to make!  No unusual ingredients for this one, just bread flour, yeast, sugar, salt, buttermilk, eggs, butter, water, lemon extract, dried tart cherries, and pecans.

Celebration Bread Ingredients Continue reading →

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