Tuesday, October 30, 2012

With baking there is no fail, only lessons to be learned

Hello Sweets,

 Today's post is about the lessons that can be taught to you in your kitchen, and to show that all of us, both experienced and not, can make mistakes, and not let them discourage us from doing what we love!  I chose to venture down the road of homemade bread today.  This wasn't my first attempt, but it was sadly my first fail. :(  But I will not let this discourage me.  I will attempt this recipe in the next few days, but until the success, I have decided to still post about my fail in hopes that it will perhaps not only help others, but also encourage all of you to keep trying.

So what did I try to make you ask?  Whole Wheat Honey bread, similar to what they serve at The Cheesecake Factory.  Nathan took me there on our anniversary back in August.  I had never been there before, and he thought that was crazy considering my love of cheesecake (hmmm definitely another post topic lol), and needless to say, their food was delicious!  Our entrees were savory.  Nathan had the Southeast Asian Caramel Chicken, and I had the Chicken Fettuccine mmmm good!

This part is going to sound silly, but next to their AMAZING cheesecake, was the whole wheat honey bread they bring you when you sit down.  Usually I am more partial to the white bread served in restaurants, only because a lot of restaurant's brown bread is sort of dry, but at The Cheesecake Factory, their brown bread is to die for.  Of course being the ever loving girlfriend, I have been scouring the Internet for a recipe that comes close, and I think I finally got one worthy lol, and go figure, the first time trying was a disaster.  This will not be the last time you'll see this recipe (or one close to it), as I am determined to make this delicious bread!  Now onward to my silly little catastrophe :p 

Honey Whole Wheat Bread (via Raegun Wear)
3/4C warm water
1/4C molasses
1 1/8C all-purpose flour
3/8C wheat flour
1/2Tbs cocoa
1/2Tbs sugar
1Tsp instant coffee
1/2Tsp salt
1/2 packet of yeast (1 1/8Tsp)
1/2Tbs oil
1 egg white (optional)
oats (optional)

1)  Dissolve the coffee in the water.  Add yeast and let bubble.
I think this is where I went wrong, I waited but never got bubbles :(

2)  Add sugar, cocoa, salt, and oil.

3)  Add 1/2 the flour and the molasses and knead.  Continue adding flour until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
Doesn't exactly look appealing lol

Note:  You want sticky but manageable dough.  The stickier the dough the softer the bread will be.
Definitely sticky :)

4)  Allow the dough to rise until it doubles in size.
I was hoping it would rise, but alas it did not

5)  Shape into rolls or loaf.  Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with oats.  Allow to rise again.
my sad little brick lol

6)  Bake at 350F for 20-35 minutes (time depends on size of roll or loaf).  To tell if it's done, pick it up and thump the underside, it will sound hollow when finished.

Well alas, sadly my bread did not end up rising and stayed a small little brick of ingredients lol at least I can laugh at my own mistake! Although it didn't rise as expected, it did however, turn out to be just as delicious as the bread I used as a template, if not more. 

I hope this "fail" blog shows everyone to never give up when you don't succeed, and don't ever let that be the 'end all be all' for your kitchen excursions.  And when you really feel frustrated, pull up this blog post and laugh at my silly blunder, and give yourself the credit you deserve and try again!  Until next time.....

Stay sweet,

Jennifer xoxoxo

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