Saturday, March 8, 2014

Oatmeal Bread





(Disclaimer: Dearest Amy, If you are reading this, please do not pummel the life out of me. I write this in good fun, knowing you are the sweetest girl around, and therefore I have {hopefully} decreased my chances of being pummeled.)


Once upon a time...

In a land semi-far away, where the cows were many and the people were few...

There was a tiny town called Carey. (Population 600... if you count the cows.)

In Carey, a beautiful girl named Amy lived with her parents, three sisters, and three brothers.

And Amy was in love. With her whole heart, and mind, and soul... and stomach.

She was absolutely head over heels in love with...

TOAST.

TOAST waited for her at home every single day, faithful as can be. TOAST always smelled good. TOAST always made her feel wonderful inside. TOAST was easy... low-maintenance... and ready to be with Amy any time of the day or night. Amy loved to butter up TOAST, and TOAST loved being buttered up by Amy. They literally fed off each other... er... I supposed that part was one-sided.

TOAST and Amy were meant to be together forever, and to this day, Amy's love for TOAST lives on...

...

Okay, so that was a bit ridiculous, but it's also basically true.

Amy is my sister. And she really does love toast more than anyone I've ever met. 

Maybe I exaggerated, but that exaggeration is minimal. 

Seriously. I'll give you an example:

One year for Amy's birthday (16?... 17?... I don't remember), her "birthday cake" was composed entirely of toast. 

I'll give you another example:

Amy is an awesome basketball player, and started on the varsity team in high school. Her coach created a play with Amy in mind and dubbed that play, "Toast." 

I kid you not. 

And I just so happen to have one of the best bread recipes for making toast. (Amy will love me for this one....hopefully enough to make up for the silliness above.)

This Oatmeal Bread is rustic, chewy, and so, so, good! When toasted, and buttered, you've got the makings of the perfect toast. 

I made a loaf of it at 10:00 AM today.

Three hours have passed.

It's gone.

Take a look:


 Here's the dough all mixed together.


 Here's the dough after rising for and hour and a half.


 Here's the dough in the pan, all ready to rise again.


 Here's the dough ready for the oven.


The end result.


If you've never made bread, don't be intimidated. This loaf is not meant to be perfect, and isn't necessarily supposed to be "pretty" sandwich bread, which makes it great for beginner bakers. It's great plain, buttered, or with your favorite spread... and it's EASY.  So, so SOOOO easy.  

This one's for you, Amy.



Oatmeal Bread
Printable Version

(Note: If you want step-by-step instructions, you can use my tutorial here.)

*Makes one 9x5 loaf

INGREDIENTS
1 1/3 C. lukewarm water
2 tsp. dry active yeast
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. oil
3 cups flour (I use 2 cups all-purpose, 1 cup whole wheat)
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 tsp. salt

DIRECTIONS
In a large mixing bowl (or standing mixer), combine the water, yeast, sugar, and oil. Allow to rest 10 minutes. Add the flour, oats, and salt. Mix thoroughly, then knead by hand (about 10 minutes) or with the standing mixer (about 5 minutes.)

Cover the bowl with a dish towel or plastic wrap. Let rise 90 minutes. Punch down the dough, and kneed by hand, turning the dough over on itself several times.

Coat a 9x5 bread pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Shape the dough into a loaf, and place it in the pan. Cover with a dishtowel, and let rise.

While the dough is rising in the pan, pre-heat an oven to 375 degrees.

When the dough has risen 1-2 inches above the pan, place the pan in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown.

Remove loaf from oven, and pan. Let the bread cool on a cooling rack or dishtowel. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes before cutting. Serve as desired.


15 comments:

  1. Cute, cute story and what a great recipe. It sounds delicious. xo Diana

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    1. Thanks! I hope my sister thinks it's as "cute" as you do. ;)

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  2. I hope to try this. Thanks for posting.

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  3. Thanks for sharing! It looks delicious. I plan on baking it tomorrow!

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  4. YUM! This recipe looks delish... I think I'll bake some bread tomorrow. :) I bake one of your other bread recipes all the time... Hubby loves it! Tahnks. :)

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  5. To anyone reading this, I have to introduce myself as the sister of the cunningly suave author of this blog. Yes, I am Amy.

    Am I ashamed that my love affair for toast has now been plastered on the internet?? Do I feel awkward that everyone now knows that I had a toast cake in high school and was a toast legend on the court?

    No!

    ...Okay, toast legend may have been a bit overboard... But to be perfectly honest, I'm glad that a love for toast and all things delicious and good in life are being spread through Andrea's wonderful blog! I hope my story inspires more people to eat toast. Daily. Hourly. Whenever you feel the urge. :)

    If you really want to know the truth, I was finishing my breakfast (of toast and cereal) the other morning when my sister texted me and asked if we could still be friends after I read her latest blog post... If that doesn't make you nervous, I don't know what will! My sister knows way too many ridiculous stories about me! It wasn't until later that night that I got a chance to read her latest post. About toast.

    I laughed so hard that the piece of toast that I was eating at the moment dropped to the floor! (Thank goodness it was only the cheap-o Sara Lee kind and not something more extravagant like the stuff that comes from the recipe above!) As you can see, my passion for toast lives on. Being a toast fanatic is a lifestyle that I would recommend to anyone. :) Especially with homemade bread. MMMmmm.

    Moral of the story- I love my sister and admire her talent for writing, budgeting, being a stellar wife, mother, and sister, and creating yummy food. I'm honored to be on her blog :) Thanks Andrea, I love you!

    I hope you all enjoy this recipe! Viva la toast!

    Amy

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  6. Hilarious stories! :)

    Funny, I was just telling my sister-in-law this week that I want to try an oatmeal bread. Now here's a recipe that looks perfect! Can't wait to taste it.

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  7. Andrea, oh my goodness, hi! I found this blog, was totally loving all the recipes, determined that I was going to commit to making my own bread, when lo and behold and I scrolled through one of your posts and saw your picture and was like...holy cow I know them!!! Missing you guys! Love the blog. Stay in touch.

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    1. Annalisa!! Hello, dear friend. I've missed you too. I hope life is treating you well. We're in the middle of figuring out a "real job." Can't wait for all the uncertainty to end! I'm ready to make some plans. Please let me know what you guys are up to, and how you're liking (Parawan??) We'd love to know.

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  8. I just found your blog via Pinterest, and it happened at just the right time in our lives! I am new to being a stay-at-home mommy of two and truly loving every second of it. There's no place I'd rather be than at home with them. But we've always had two incomes, so it's become a bit of a challenge to live life frugally. I've been scouring the internet for great role models AND looking for good (easy) bread recipes. I've found both of those things in your blog. I was up far too late last night reading your recipes and some of your tips on living frugally, and this morning I woke up and made this oatmeal bread! Heavenly! I just ate my second piece! I need to stop before my husband comes home and asks me why that delicious, freshly-baked bread I sent him a picture of is nowhere to be found! :)

    Keep up the good work--I really appreciate all the time and effort you've put into making it easy for newbies like me to follow your baking recipes, as well as offering lots of support in living life frugally--and joyfully! I'm looking forward to more of your posts!

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  9. Bread is in the oven now! I can't wait to try it. It smells divine!

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  10. 2 tbs. seems like a lot of yeast! Can I use one packet of rapid rise yeast?

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    1. It's supposed to be 2 tsp. :) Oops... One packet would definitely do the trick.

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    2. Thanks! Just pulled a loaf out of the oven. One problem I have with bread is knowing when it's done. I'm always afraid even when it's "golden brown" that it's not done in the middle. Any tips? Also, I have the crock pot refried beans cooking away - love those!

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  11. I have always had a hard time baking bread. I really want to learn how to bake bread. Homemade bread is so much better than store bought. Thanks for the recipe I want to try it soon.

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