Bread & Dough

Bread, one of the staples in life.

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Easter Bread

1 package Yeast
1/2 cup Warm Water
1/2 cup Scalded Milk
1/4 cup Butter
1/3 cup Sugar
1 pinch Salt
2 Beaten Eggs
4 cups Flour
Orange and Lemon Zest

Dissolve Yeast, stir Yeast into warm liquid and let stand for approximately 5 minutes. Add Eggs to Yeast, mix ingredients into a dough. Grease bowl and dough, cover bowl/s with cloth and let rise until double in size. Cut into pieces, roll, and fold matching ends and braid. Let rise once again. Brush with an Egg mixed with 2 tablespoons of Water. Bake in moderate oven at 375° F for approximately 25 minutes, or until light golden brown.

It is traditional to include a colored hard-boiled egg mounted within the bread.

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Lemon Bread (2 loaves)

1 cup Butter, softened
1 cup Granulated Sugar
3 Eggs, separated
1 Lemon Zest
3 cups all-purpose Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Milk
1 cup chopped Nuts (Walnuts, Pecans, or Hazelnuts)

Topping:
2 tablespoons Butter, softened
1-1/4 cups Icing Sugar
3 tablespoons Lemon Juice
1-1/2 teaspoons Lemon Zest

Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease and flour two (2) 8” x 4” loaf pans. Cream Butter and Sugar until light and fluffy, beat in Egg Yolks and Lemon Zest. Stir together with the Flour, Baking Powder, and Salt. Add to Butter mixture alternately with the Milk. Beat Egg Whites until stiff but not dry, fold into bread mixture along with the nuts. Pour into loaf pans (2), bake for an hour, or until done. Let cool.

Combine topping ingredients and drizzle over cooled loaves

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Rich Tea Biscuit Dough

4 tablespoons Shortening
2 cups Flour
4 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 pinch of Salt
1/2 cup Sugar
1 Egg combined with Milk to make 3/4 cup

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Kalach Bread

1 package Yeast
1/2 cup Warm Water
1 cup Scalded Milk
1 tablespoon Shortening
1 tablespoon Sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons Salt
4 cups Flour
1 Egg

Soften Yeast in water. Combine Milk, Shortening, Sugar, and Salt... let cool to ‘lukewarm.’ Add 1-1/2 cups Flour, beat well. Beat in Yeast and Egg. Stir in remaining Flour (reserving 1/2 cup for kneading). Turn out of floured surface and knead until smooth. Place in greased bowl, grease top of dough and cover. Let rise until ‘double’ in bulk. Divide into 8 parts, roll each into strands of about 20” long. Twist two strands together (repeat for others), making a total of 4 ‘twists.’ On a greased baking sheet braid three twists into a circle. Encircle it with the remaining twist. Cover and let rise until ‘double’ in bulk. Brush with an egg mixed with 2 tablespoons water. Bake 375F degrees for about 25 minutes.

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Basic Pizza Dough

1 cup + 2 tablespoons warm Water (105F-115F degrees)
1 package Active Dry Yeast
1 teaspoon Granulated Sugar
3 to 3-1/4 cups Flour, preferably Bread Flour
1 teaspoon Salt
1/4 cup Olive Oil (approx)

Pour Water into warm bowl and sprinkle with Yeast and Sugar. Stir well using finger-tips to make sure all particles are dissolved. Set aside for 5-10 minutes until mixture foams.

Place 3 cups Flour and Salt in a large mixing bowl and toss lightly with a fork to combine. Make a depression in the center and pour in Yeast mixture and 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil. Mix together until well combined. Transfer to lightly floured surface and knead, adding additional flour as needed.

Grease a large bowl with Olive Oil. Smear dough with Olive Oil as well. Place in bowl. Cover with Saran Wrap and set aside to rise until ‘double in bulk’ (approx 1 hour), then punch dough down.
To make Neapolitan-Style Pizza (thin crust), divide dough in half. Roll out each portion into a 13” circle. Sprinkle a 12” pizza pan (preferably dark or black metal) with cornmeal. Lay the dough on the pan and press the excess dough up on the sides to form ‘the crust.’ Brush lightly with Olive Oil.

To make Sicilian Pizza (thick crust) grease the bottom and sides of a 10” by 15” rectangle and transfer to pan. Brush lightly with Olive Oil.
Cover pizza/s with sauce. Bake Neapolitan-Style in the center of an oven at 450F degrees for approximately 10 minutes. Remove pizza and add ‘ingredients’ such as the cheese and other ‘toppings.’ Return to oven until cheese is bubbly and crust is brown and crisp. Approx. 10-15 minutes.

Bake Sicilian-Style in the center of an oven at 400F degrees for 15 minutes. Remove pizza and cover sauce with the cheese and toppings. Return to oven until cheese is bubbly and crust is brown and crisp. Approx. 15-20 minutes.

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Pizza Dough (Sicilian)
(Makes 2 Large Pizzas, or Four Thin Pizzas)

1 and 1/2 cups of warm water (100F and 110F degrees)
2 Packages yeast (or 1/2 oz. or 4 1/2 teaspoons of yeast)
2 teaspoons sugar
4 cups of flour or more
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil

Directions
1. Place yeast and sugar in a small bowl, add 1/2 cup of warm water. Mix well. Wait about 5 minutes for the yeast and sugar to activate.

2. In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, salt, olive oil, 1 cup of warm water and the yeast mixture. Mix this with a fork to get all the liquid absorbed by the flour.

3. Place a handful of flour on a pastry board or mixing surface. Dust your hands and spread out the flour. Empty the contents of the bowl on to the flour.

4. Knead the dough for 8-10 minutes or until the texture is smooth and uniform. If the dough seems a little sticky, add a little more flour.

One method to knead, is to lean on the dough with the palm of your hand. Press the dough to the mixing surface. Fold the dough and repeat.

5. Place the dough in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Place bowl in draft free area and cover with a cloth.

6. Let the dough rise for about an hour. Punch down the dough and wait about 45 minutes. Your dough is now ready.

7. Cut the dough in half.

8. Dust a rolling pin with flour and roll out on a floured pastry board until the dough is the desired shape. Keep using flour, as needed so the dough won't stick.

9. Dust a cookie sheet with corn meal. (Oil will work ok, but the dough will be greasy.)

10. Use a spatula and slide the dough onto the cookie sheet. If you have a peel, assemble the pizza right on the peel dusted with corn meal. Then use the peel to place the pizza on the pre-heated pizza & baking stone. (You can also assemble the pizza first and then slide a peel underneath the pizza.) If the pizza is "sticky" and won't slide easily, use some dental floss to slide under the dough! Make sure you use enough flour under the dough next time!

11. The more you make dough, the easier it will become. Don't get discouraged if it seems difficult the first time. You will surprise yourself at how easy it becomes the second time.

This recipe from pizzatherapy.com

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Last updated on August 11, 2001