Yeast infatuation

When you’re a total beginner at something and you put your mind to it, you often see huge spurts of improvement.

I’m sure that’s what is happening here.  But…nonetheless.  ZOMG!  LOOK AT THIS THING:

That right there?   That’s a pretty impressive loaf of bread, if I do say so myself!

My second batch of dough made via the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day method was definitely a step up from the first.  This was the first of two loaves from the batch.  Look at how closely it resembles the picture on the cover of the book!

Things I did differently to the dough batch this time around:

– I used WARM water instead of cool-ish when mixing the yeast initially.  I still don’t have a thermometer, but I conjured some imagery and did my best to guess.  100* is the temperature of hot tub water, so I tried to imagine whether I’d squeal if I stuck my toes in it after a day of skiing.

– I let the initial rise go for about three hours, instead of two.

– I added some chopped dried rosemary.

My dough batch made enough dough for two loaves (half of the recipe).  For the first loaf (pictured above), I pulled half of the refrigerated dough out the following afternoon.  I shaped it and let it rise for about an hour.

The result: a puffy loaf with a delightful crust, with just a hint of rosemary flavor.  (Next time I’ll add more herbs!)

The only unfortunate part was that it was consumed within 24 hours.  O HAI, carb coma!

I digested for a few days – and then was ready to make the second loaf.  The dough had been sitting in the refrigerator for several days, and even though the book insists that wet dough can be refrigerated for up to a week, I had my doubts about it.

I scraped it out this morning, shaped it into a dome, and placed it strategically on top of the dryer with a load of warm clothing rumbling gently below.

(The ever-present layer of drying sports bras kept it company.)

After 90 minutes, I was truly surprised that it seemed to have almost doubled in size.  I sprinkled some coarse sea salt on top and popped it in the oven.

Although it was slightly denser than the first loaf, this one had a delicious, slightly sour flavor.  Almost like sourdough.  Salty, chewy sourdough.

Have I mentioned that I’m never buying bread from the grocery store again?

Next up?  I just might try my hand at a baguette.   Dangerous.

And oh-hey-guess-what?  As a thank you for putting up with my excessive yammering about bread-making, I’m having a giveaway!

The folks at Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day have agreed to give a free copy to one of you!  I think this is pretty awesome, because I do think it’s a damn fine book.  As someone who has never been good at baking anything, I’m floored at how easy making bread has been, following the guidelines outlined in this book.  And the fact that it’s co-written by a trained pastry chef and a regular dude who just really likes bread makes the prose very easy – and even enjoyable – to read.

Anyway, entering is simple:

  1. Like Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day on on Facebook ( and leave me a comment telling me you did.
  2. Follow @ArtisanBreadIn5 on Twitter (!/ArtisanBreadIn5) and leave me a comment telling me you did.
  3. Tweet/FB about this giveaway, blog about this giveaway, or write a poem about this giveaway and share it with the class and leave me a comment telling me you did.
Pretty easy!  And I’d highly recommend you enter, because this book is rad.
Anyway, I’m off to sip my Cab and stuff my face with warm-from-the-oven fake-sourdough.  Supposedly there is another round of tornado coming this way tomorrow, and if I die, it’s going to be full of good bread and wine.
Happy Hump Day!
(FTC awkward words of requirement: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day is providing a free copy to the winner of this giveaway.  However, I originally bought the book myself, and the opinions expressed here are completely my own.  As it happens, I just love this book so much that I contacted their PR people and begged them to share.  You’re welcome.)

*Update 5/5/11: Giveaway has closed, but feel free to leave a comment if you just wanna chat about delicious bread or write random poetry!*


39 responses to “Yeast infatuation

  1. Oooh, I am SO excited about this giveaway! I am a bread junkie and have been baking bread for the last 6 months but haven’t bought any of the good books, this is one on my list!

    I liked Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day on FB.

  2. I FB’d about the giveaway!

  3. What an awesome giveaway! I’ve always been too intimated to make my own bread; seems like so much time. But if that is the end result, well then count me in! 🙂

  4. Yay! Liked on facebook. I want to make my own bread asap

  5. Whoa. That looks good. I’ve never made bread before. It doesn’t seem all that tough though.

    I just liked them on the book of faces!

  6. Awesome giveaway, although I feel like a total dork thinking that. Following on Twitter now!

    Glad that your bread worked out. The warmness of the dryer was a good call. I wonder if the vibration of the dryer disturbed the rising though? My grandma always says not to agitate the bread while it is rising.

  7. Ooh ohh please pick me I love making bread! I followed them on twitter

  8. that bread is lookin’ good, especially now that passover is ovaaa 🙂

    i did the whole facebook thing. and twitter. but i can’t write poetry and hate writing separate comments indicating i did these things. i guess this counts as one entry? yeah, i’m stubborn.

  9. I need help making bread! I can never get the yeast right, I think.
    I liked them on facebook.

  10. “Liked” it on FB. Since I now make my own pasta I figure I should learn how to make my own bread too…something with lots of roasted garlic in it sounds good…with some good olive oil to dip it in. Mouth=watering.

  11. I love making bread. The smell alone is enough to never want to buy bread at the store again.

  12. BRB writing you a love poem!

  13. I just liked Artisan Bread on facebook! I have read reviews about them before and I seriously want the book!

  14. I love carbs. Nom nom nom. Carbs carbs carbs.

    Yeah. That’s about all I got right now.

  15. I liked Artisan Bread and linked your post on FB. I have also recently started making bread and it is wonderful! I use Jim Lahey’s no-work bread,which includes putting the dough into a pre-heated pot (450 for 30 min.), cover for 25 min., then remove cover for remaining 30-35 minutes. The result — an amazingly crunchy crust. Heavenly.

  16. Liked on FB!

  17. Oooohhh, I hope I win!! ❤ me some homemade bread!

    Liked on facebook

  18. And followed on Twitter!

  19. aaaand wrote a tweet. Whew!! done

  20. If I don’t win I am buying this book! I liked them on FB

  21. And I’m following!

  22. Yay, I love bread!!

    I liked them on FB…

  23. …and I’m following them on Twitter…

  24. …AND I’m writing a poem. A haiku!


    I can’t MS paint
    like Shelby, but with this book
    I’ll bake tasty bread


  25. There once was a girl from Kansas City
    Who thought Shelby’s bread looked pretty
    She entered the drawing
    Lost and was bawling
    And took it all out on her kitty.

    What? You said a poem!

  26. Pingback: slacking + a love poem « Cheaper Than Therapy

  27. I followed them on Twitter!

  28. I’ve had some unsuccessful bouts of homemade bread baking in my day. And I heart cookbooks. Fingers crossed!

    I twatted.

  29. and I follow them on twitter now.

    I also follow your mother’s uncle’s best friend’s ex-sister-in-law’s turtle. So I think that gets an extra entry.

  30. I absolutely love making my own bread, but it never comes out with the type of crust that I am hoping for! This cookbook would be a great addition to my collection!

    I like them on FB.

  31. hmmmmmmmmm i probs should try to make my own bread at some point. maybe winning this would be good for me hahah! i liked on fb

  32. I followed them on twitter. Love homemade bread!

  33. I liked ArtisanBreadin5 on FB and followed them on twitter. Plus I tweeted about this post, yo. That’s how bad I want this bread book!!!

    p.s. at first I thought your post title said – Yeast Infection. Lolz.

  34. I “liked.” I tweeted. Aaanndd now for a poem:

    Warm-from-the-oven, this bread is so rad.
    Missing out on this book would truly be sad.

    Your bread-baking life starts this first day of May,
    because all you need is five minutes a day.

    Yes, Artisan bread without all the fuss.
    Easy enough that you probably won’t cuss.

    The crusty goodness of your first loaf of bread,
    “Thanks Shelby!” will be the first thing in your head.

  35. At least it’s a yeast infatuation and not an infection.

    Somebody had to say it. 🙂

    I like them on The Facebook!

  36. I am following Artisan Bread in Five on twitter! Can’t like them on facebook because I shut down my facebook for finals. (Actually, that’s the only way studying is going to happen).

    But this bread looks super yummy. My dad bakes bread a lot at home but at college I’m stuck eating stale sliced stuff. Not the same.

  37. I ‘liked’ them on FB!

  38. I LOVE bread. Especially artisan bread. ACME here in the Bay Area is amazing. Mmmm cranberry walnut bread.

    I liked them on FB 🙂

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