Easy bread and rolls

 Iam really not the bread eating kind of  person,not one to have breads ,  buns, rolls of any kind except of the occasional paav bhaaji , I am never tempted to eat bread, but enjoy making many varieties of sandwiches for my daughter , so bread baking skills were definitely to be grappled with. Many a time I have tried baking bread in a small with  limited  measure of success. 

Now wiser and some breads and buns later I have compiled my own step by step guide to follow for basic bread baking. Recipe is good for both bread and rolls...my basic recipe for both..





 Keep the yeast, sugar and little warm milk in a bowl to foam , within 10 minutes it should look like this.
All foamy and good , so you can confidently go ahead with rest of the dough preparation.





Make a well on a clean counter and  add the prepared yeast solution in the middle little by little.



As you keep adding the milk and making the dough, it will look like this shaggy and sticky but not to worry, you need to pull the dough with your hands as much as it will go, the stickiness will slowly reduce as you keep doing this. work either on the counter or in a deep bowl or even on a non stick surface...easier to clean up.























Here you need to use the heel of your palm  to drag along the sticky dough gently , you will see the so many perforations showing the yeast has worked well, this is one test to see if the dough has been kneaded well. you will see at this stage the dough comes together, though appearing to be still stodgy.


Finally within 5 to 8 minutes you will start getting a smooth shiny elastic dough after adding the softened butter in the finishing step of making the dough, this helps to gather a smooth dough.













Use a bench scraper or any sharp rounded tool in the kitchen , like a flat spatula  will also do to gather the still sticky dough into an oiled bowl.Scrape off from the counter into a greased bowl where the dough will rest  upto 45 minutes max or until doubled .
                                                             
                                                     
Keep the dough covered with a cling film or a damp           kitchen towel on the counter.

       

After the dough has nearly doubled, it will look like this. Completely risen.
 Remove the dough from the bowl, and flatten it against a nonstick surface or a dusted counter. I prefer the nonstick plate as it helps to work easily with the still wobbly dough. Knock out all the air and flatten it to a thickness evenly.I did not use any measurements, just roughly flattened out while using the knuckles to knock out air and a rectangle as much as possible.

The reason is this recipe can be  used to make pav buns/dinner rolls , so you need to cut the dough into thick strips . vertically as shown.in the pic below.





Use the scraper to make the strips and cut them further to smaller pieces to make into rolls . If you plan to make a loaf, then simple keep the flattened rectangle of dough and keep rolling and shaping into a loaf , pinch the seams and smooth-en.












 While keeping the small balls of dough on the baking sheet, keep them slightly apart if you want a round shape. Pic below shows the rolls almost touching one another after expansion during second rise.

Thats it!! you have now come to the last leg of the bread/roll baking stage of popping it into the preheated oven . In between the second rise, keep your oven heated and ready to bake the bread.











Now let us get down to the recipe in detail.


Ingredients:



1 cup warm milk  ( or water + milk to make 1 cup, to be warm).
2 ¼ tsp  active dry yeast
2 ½ tsp  sugar
salt
1 ½  tbls softened butter (or non-dairy equivalent)

2 ½  cups flour.


Procedure :



















.


































 Let the rolls cool on a wire rack until cool enough to handle. They are best if eaten within a day or two, but will keep good and fresh  in an airtight container on the counter for up to a week. Which I really doubt as once these rolls are out from the oven your  family will pounce on them ! 

Notes


I have been baking bread s and roll in a small way and now I can say confidently that although the recipe for the bread and rolls seem easy and fuss free, believe me it is not!! Not if you do not heed to the care taken while kneading.

Several times I have followed the recipes to the  T . yet ended up with a hard, roll or not at all a satisfying roll. I now realize the various kneading techniques initially matters to get that perfect fluffy roll.

I have chronicled several small but very important tips for getting that super soft light roll that we all yearn for.





























Note the inside of the roll is so soft and fluffy. That is the right texture we want.














I made a small loaf as well as some rolls too. Some pics of the small loaf that I baked.




reference to
http://breadbaking.about.com/od/yeastbreads/r/1loafbread.htm,
http://www.thesimpledollar.com/homemade-bread-cheap-delicious-healthy-and-easier-than-you-think/