Tag Archives: Bernard Clayton

Dill & Cottage Cheese Bread

So nice to have the temperature finally cool down a bit!  Fritz and I got up bright and early so we could get our laundry done and go to the gym before we have to really get serious about studying.

Throughout the past few weeks, I’ve been working on running again.  I’ve never been a big fan of running, most likely because I’m just not very good at it–the furthest I have ever gone in one go is three miles.  And it was h-a-r-d.  I’ve always wanted to be a runner, because it’s an amazing form of exercise that is available to you any time, any place.  But…I’m just not good at it. Then last year I picked it up again, but did something to injure a peripheral nerve in my left leg–probably going too much, too soon.  After all, my body has never really been trained to run.

As I’m sure you can imagine, the burning down my leg combined with tingling and numbness in my feet which worsened as I sat through class did not encourage my running aspirations.

This year, after doing lots of exercises to get rid of the nerve problem (for the most part), I started thinking about running again.  Dang it, if a physical therapy student can’t train her body to run healthily, then who can?  So I started a new program that involves lots of stretching, strengthening targeted to specific muscles that I know are too weak (that’d be my glutes), and a very slow and steady running goal.  I started at half a mile, and added a tenth of a mile every time I worked out.  Running at a 10-minute mile pace means it’s only one more minute of running every time I add on.

So far, I’m at a mile and a half! Woo! It’s hard, but it’s not that hard.  My biggest problem with running is all mental–I have to distract myself from focusing on how much distance I’ve covered, otherwise, it’s torture.  And so far, no nerve problems.

Anyway, after my short run today, I was seriously craving some carbs (actually, I always crave carbs).  Luckily I made this light and fluffy but seriously savory bread yesterday!

Dill & Cottage Cheese Bread (from Bernard Clayton’s New Complete Book of Breads

  • 1 C cottage cheese
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 T dried onion flakes
  • 1 T fresh minced dill
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/4 t baking soda
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 2 1/2 C all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 t butter, melted (don’t this until it’s about to come out of the oven)
  • dash of salt

Grease a casserole dish (1 1/2 quarts) or two bread pans–or one bread pan if you want one gigantic and oddly shaped loaf like mine.

In a saucepan, warm the cottage cheese over medium heat just until it feels warm to the touch.

In a mixing bowl, combine the warm cottage cheese, sugar, onion, dill, salt, baking soda, eggs, and yeast.  If you don’t have eggs at room temperature, just place them in a bowl of hot water for a minute or two until they warm up–it’ll help the bread to rise.  Add the flour 1/2 C at a time until a thick batter is formed–a very thick batter.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and allow it to rise until doubled in size, about an hour.  Once it’s ready, stir down the batter, and spoon it into the dish/bread pans. 

Cover the pans with waxed paper, being careful that the paper doesn’t touch the dough since risen dough may fall once the wax paper is removed.  Allow it to double in size again, about 45 minutes.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees 20 minutes before baking.

Bake the loaf on the medium rack until it is a deep brown, 40-45 minutes.  You may want to cover it with foil after a half an hour so it doesn’t brown too much.  When a toothpick is inserted, it should come out completely dry.  Remove from the oven and brush with the melted butter and sprinkle with a dash of salt.

Allow it to cool for 10 minutes before slicing. 

I think this might be my favorite bread I have ever made.  It tastes nothing like cottage cheese (actually reminds me a bit of an everything bagel), but is super light and fluffy.  And the savory flavor is to die for.

I toasted a giant piece for breakfast this morning and had it with two eggs on top.  So delicious!

Fritz isn’t quite as in love with it as I am (his loyalty remains with banana bread), but he has enjoyed several pieces today, so I think that’s enough confirmation for me.

So light! So fluffy!  I love me some dense, nutty, whole-grain breads, but sometimes it’s nice to have a change.

I’m off to try to get some studying done.

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Multigrain Bread

Seeing the footage from Japan really puts our lives in perspective, doesn’t it?

Suddenly studying doesn’t seem so bad anymore.  Even better that I have an apartment to do it in, and I know where all my family members are–and there is fresh bread to eat.

I baked this bread over the weekend, and it has held me over for the last few days when I need a quick carb pick-me-up (and it tastes amazing, really amazing with a rooibos tea spread that I bought at Wegman’s a while ago).  Between that and the sun finally coming out, I might be able to muster up enough energy to get going on the last few midterms I need to study for.

This recipe is from Bernard Clayton’s New Complete Book of Breads, and I chose it simply because I was impressed by the sheer amount of whole grain he managed to cram into it.  It makes three loaves, and it is absolutely perfect to toast and eat with peanut butter, rooibos tea spread, butter, bananas, honey, mint jelly, eggs, and blackberry jam.  I know because I’ve tried it all.

Multigrain Bread (three loaves)

  • 1 C rolled oats
  • 1 C barley flour (you can grind your own)
  • 1 C millet
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 2 t salt
  • 2 C hot water (120-130 degrees)
  • 1/3 C canola oil
  • 3 packages dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 C mashed potatoes (yes, really)
  • 2 C whole-wheat flour
  • 3/4 C rye flour
  • 2 C all-purpose flour

Line three (or two if you want really tall loaves) loaf pans with wax paper, and grease them.  Make the mashed potatoes or better yet use up leftovers (plain–no butter or sour cream, please).

In the mixer bowl, measure the oats, barley flour, millet, brown sugar, and salt.  Pour in the hot water and canola oil and mix.  Add the yeast and allow it to dissolve in the liquid before adding the mashed potatoes.

Next, add the whole-wheat and rye flours, and mix for two minutes with the flat beater.  Change over to the dough hook.  While the mixer is running, add the all-purpose flour 1/2 C at a time until the dough forms a “shaggy mass”, pulling away from the sides of the bowl.  Once it is all added, if the dough remains sticky you can add sprinkles of flour, but don’t go overboard.  Knead the dough (using the dough hook) for eight minutes.

Place the dough into a large, greased bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and leave at room temperature until it has doubled in size (about 1 1/2 hours).

A seriously large bowl.  I had to switch to a bigger one because I didn’t anticipate the dough rising this much.

Turn the dough onto a floured table and shape it into three loaves.  Place into the pans, cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel, and let it rise again (another hour).  When you have twenty minutes left to rise, pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.

Bake on the middle rack until browned, about 45 minutes.  Turn out one of the loaves and tap on the bottom–if it sounds hollow, then they’re done.

Allow them to cool before slicing.  If you can.

The absolute best part about this bread (other than the yeasty fresh-bread taste, obviously) is that the millet gives each slice an amazing crunch.  Totally unexpected.

Best thing since…well.

I kept one loaf out and froze the others.  Just wrap in plastic wrap and/or freezer bags first.  When you take them out, make sure you allow the bread to reabsorb any water that forms inside the bag before you start slicing it and toasting it, otherwise you’ll have a really dry sandwich.

Fritz is presenting his research today in San Diego–I wish I was there too, but at least the sun managed to break out from the clouds here so I’m not missing out on all the fun.

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