Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Death By Carbs

I love bread. In fact, I took on a new project of trying to make bread from scratch. I was inspired by a recipe, Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. It seemed simple enough.

But apparently I spoke too soon when I set my Facebook status earlier this week to "making bread. A first...I have never heard of homemade bread hurting anyone, yet."

On Monday, I mixed the flour, water, salt and yeast, let it rise, and then put it in the fridge to chill. I also took AK to Bed, Bath and Beyond and bought pizza stone, the one piece of required equipment that I did not yet own.

That evening I arranged the racks in my oven appropriately, carefully placing the stone and required pan for water in it. I also got other items ready on my counter so that I would be ready to go yesterday when I got home from work.

My plan was to get the dough relaxing on the counter and set the oven preheating while I fed the girls. Once they were done I could just pop my dough in the oven and the house would be filled with the wonderful scent of fresh baked bread in no time. The Hoos would be wowed by my homemaking skills and I would be in bread nirvana.

I should have known.

The girls were out of sorts when I picked them up. AK was starving since they had started her on a new schedule giving her snack at 2:15 instead of 3:15; she was also exhausted since I forgot to send in a pacifier and she only took one nap and had been awake since 11:45. LP also did not nap and ran out of her classroom door with a few other kids when another mom was frozen in place holding the door open.

When we got into the house I quickly removed the bread dough from the fridge and placed it on the counter to relax. I then set about calming LP and AK, mostly by giving them a slightly early dinner (it was 5:30 and they usually eat at 6).

Once they were set up, I got the oven preheating to 450 and shaped my dough. At 6:15, I decided it was time to get the dough in the oven. After spilling cornmeal all over the floor (it kept the dough from sticking to my cutting board, but nothing kept the cornmeal on the board), I finally got the dough on the stone. It looked beautiful.

I then got hot water out of the tap and prepared to pour it into the pan in the oven. Apparently this provides steam which makes your bread nice and crusty.

As soon as the water hit the pan, I knew I had a problem. My problem - I forgot about the properties of GLASS. A Pyrex pan, heated to 450 degrees, does not take kindly to having hot water poured in it. It immediately cracked into a million pieces in my oven.

I spent the rest of the night cleaning glass out of the oven. And cleaning corn meal off of the floor without the use of a vacuum (I tried, but it wasn't very helpful in keeping my girls calm). No one was hurt. But no one got any homemade bread either.

We still have a loaf worth of bread dough in my fridge. I think I will wait to try again until the weekend.


Robyn said...

OMG!! The same exact thing happened on another blog I read -- The Greener Biener. To think a blog could've spared you the same agony!!! LOL

The only bread I've made (other than banana bread) is challah. NOTHING makes your house smell as good and it really isn't difficult. Best recipe ever is on

Good luck with the next loaf!

emma said...

um - not sure if pizza stones are created equal, but ours took a long time to "season" before things stopped sticking - esp. fresh sticky dough. Make sure you oil that sucker up nicely, cook something greasy on it this week - like zucchini dipped in oil & salt & pepper or something equally messy :) Figured i'd pass on the tip so that you have a successful bread weekend!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you could have used a consultation with grandma first.