I normally start with a simple dough:
3 cups flour, 1 and 1/4 cups water
, 3 teaspoons active dry yeast, 1 teaspoon salt
Keep in mind that it's a balancing act between water
and flour, not a 'formula' so to speak. The goal is to make a dough that feels 'lively' without being too 'dry' or too 'wet'. Easiest for me to use a fixed amount of flour and add water to suit.
From there it normally goes one of three ways for me:
-plain bread (knead, rise, shape into greased pan, 2nd rise, bake 375-400F 15-20 min or until you get a hollow sounds tapping on it)
-pizza crust (kneed, rise, shape, bake as above for 10 min, add sauce and toppings, bake 10 more minutes)
-cinnamon rolls (kneed, rise, roll out, coat one side w/ butter-cinnamon-sugar, roll into tube, cut into wheels, place in pan, 2nd rise and bake as plain bread, frost with powered sugar+flavor extract+tiny amount of liquid until 'spreadable')
The yeast is important. I get it either bulk or bagged from the 'health food' type stores, fresher and smaller cost per loaf. If you can't remember when you bought it it might be too old. Still good after a year if refrigerated. Date the package w/ permanent marker.
Just did rolls yesterday, orange extract in the frosting, and enjoyed the encore this morning!
There are more elaborate recipes
with egg and oil
and powered milk and such but I normally stop at the 4 classic
I need to try chapati sometime again, it's been many years and the recipe does not seem all that different from standards breads. I got to see an acquaintance from the Indian subcontinent make them once...25 years ago. OK, where does the time go?.
PS Anybody been successful with the stovetop-oven-thingies on a single