The notion of making bread used to scare the bajeebers out of me. Notice it used to? I was given a bread machine forever ago. You know, a “box-like” machine where you dump all the ingredients in and hit the start button? Out pops a beautiful loaf…(for me, only rarely!) I never understood why I’d have a nice loaf of bread one time and then the next time the bread would come out so flat the only thing it was good for was to shoot skeet with! I lost confidence. Baking bread became frustrating, something I was too afraid to mess up on, so I stopped baking. (Insert sad face here*) Once I learned about yeast and the proper way to use it, the fear went away. Let the bread baking commence!
Just learning a couple of simple steps/tips, changed my view-point. I am no pro bread baker, but let me tell you this, if I can bake this bread, anyone can too! And once you do, you may find it very difficult to buy bread again. The taste of homemade bread is well…bake a loaf, and you will see what I mean.
Here goes…(Entire recipe is near the bottom of the post.)
Note: All ingredients I use are organic/non GMO, or the very best I could find. Stores are starting to catch on how much consumers want organic. Finding most ingredients/foods in an organic form is quite possible.
2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 cup whole warm milk
2 teaspoons good honey
4 tablespoons butter, softened (melted is fine too)
1 whole egg, lightly beaten
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon Himalayan salt or sea salt
For the glaze: 1 egg yolk beaten with 2 teaspoon milk. I make it ahead and store it in the refrigerator.
The How To:
1. Heat the milk in a small sauce pan. It’s been years since I’ve used a thermometer. I test it by touch. (It’s ready when it doesn’t feel cold. Warm, a bit over tepid temperature), however if you want to use a thermometer about 105 degrees is about right. (If the temp gets too high just take it off the heat and wait until it cools.) In a medium bowl, mix the honey and soften/melted butter. Add the warm milk. Then add the yeast. Stir slowly until nicely combined. Leave for 15 to allow it to work its magic!
2. While you are waiting for the yeast mixture, in a large bowl, add the flour. Stir in the salt. Make a well in the center and set aside.
3. In a small dish, add one egg and whip it slightly. Set aside.
4. After the 15 minutes your yeast mixture should be nice and bubbly/alive looking. Pour the yeast mixture gently in the flour well. Add the beaten egg. Now with a wooden spoon, stir pulling some flour with each stir, until a rough dough is created.
5. Lightly flour a clean surface and knead dough until smooth. Place in a large clean bowl, and cover with a clean cloth. Find a warm spot for it to rise. I usually am cooking something so next to the stove is a good place. You know it’s ready when it doubles in size; usually around 2 hours (Depending on how warm the spot is. Sometimes it’s ready in an hour, sometimes it takes 3.)
6. Grease a baking sheet. As I’ve mentioned above, I like to use coconut oil.
7. Turn out the finished rising dough on a clean surface and cut it into three equal pieces. Begin to roll each into long strands; like a long bread stick. After all three strands are made, start braiding them together. I fold the pieces under and it holds just fine. Set the braided bread on the greased pan. Cover it with a clean cloth and let it sit for 30 minutes in a warm spot to rise.
8. Preheat the oven to 375°F. I usually start preheating oven about 20 minutes into the braided bread’s rising.
9. Brush the bread with the egg yolk and milk mixture.
10. Bake bread for 30 minutes. You will know it’s done by the golden color. Every oven is different, so start checking at 25 minutes for color. I’ve baked this bread for 35 minutes and it was still fine. For my oven; 30 is perfect! When done, I remove the bread and set it on a wire rack to cool. Cool completely if storing it in any container, because if you don’t, it will get soggy! If storing is not needed, dig right in while it’s warm. Now for a bit of homemade butter and good jam or honey…oh my!
This is a great bread to go with soups or stews. You can make garlic bread with this or top it with cheese. You can add cheese into the dough! This is great sliced for toast too. It makes for a great egg sandwich bread. And if there’s any bread left a couple of days later…tear it up and make it into a strata! Want a recipe for a strata? Mention it in your comments below. 🙂
This bread is a great bread to gift to family and friends and great to serve up anytime bread is called for. It’s very enjoyable to make and the presentation is lovely. Give it a try!
Thank you for reading. If you want to know what else I’m up to, you can always follow me on twitter and instagram!
Wherever you are, don’t forget to pull your shoulders back, smile boldly, and breathe! My hopes for you this week is for your to find your center and enjoy something that makes you happy.
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You never cease to amaze me. What DON’T you do?
I can almost smell the bread.
Thanks for the great post!
You are very welcomed. Home baked bread is so worth the extra cardio time! I’m glad you liked the post! Have a great Tuesday! 🙂
thanks for sharing, Koko! nothing could be better than home-baked bread! 🙂
I know right?! And the smell is so amazing. It’s kinda of crazy to be baking this time of year…super hot here, but oh my is it worth turning up the air conditioner for! Thank you for being here! May happiness follow you all week! 😉
Ohh, that looks so good! Thanks for sharing!!
I wish you could taste it! Have a gorgeous day Ladies! 🙂
I’ve never heard of pink salt I’m going to get some. I’ve just mastered paella and lemon merangue not sure I can cope with yeast 😝
Wow lemon meringue! You are awesome. My brother loves lemon meringue! It’s his favorite! I had a post on all the types of salts and have no clue where it went…I wrote it a couple years ago! I guess I will have to write another. Himalayan “pink” salt is really an amazing salt. The only one I use really. So nice to hear from you Charlotte. I’d love to blog way more than I do, but real life needs my constant attention! 😉 I’ve got to pop on over to see what you’ve been up to! Take care Sweetie! 🙂
Oh my gosh, that looks so great – I am powerless against fresh, freshly buttered bread. Beautiful loaf, and handmade, no less! I use my electric mixer’s dough hook when I make bread for the heavy kneading part, but I find bread makers pretty useless – everything comes out tasting sort of flat.
Yes, I tossed the bread maker many moons ago! I am so stretched for time, but I’d love to bake bread daily if I could. I too am powerless when it comes to fresh baked bread. OMG and just simple butter melted on top! I could eat the whole darn loaf! Maybe it’s a good thing I don’t have time to bake often. Hahaha. Gorgeous sunshine here. I think I am going to go out and garden. Rained all day yesterday. It’s good to see you over here Sandra. Hope your day is amazing! 😀
I’ve been baking bread for more than 25 years (and, yes, it pains me to admit it’s been that long and I’m that old). When I met my wife, I started making challah, besides all of the other breads I make. She’s Jewish and we’ve raised our kids in that faith. Challah is the traditional Jewish bread. Challah actually is the Hebrew word for bread. Challah is a braided bread very similar to what you made, except for a lot more honey and egg. So, for more than 20 years, I’ve been making something similar to your braided bread and, yes, there is nothing better than homemade bread. Keep it up. There is nothing to fear in bread making. 🙂 https://kingmidgetramblings.wordpress.com/2012/04/23/friday-night-challah/
I too have been baking that long! Gah…oh how the years creep up on you! I have messed around with this basic bread recipe and have added a lot more honey. Hey perhaps I’ve been making Challah and didn’t know it! Isn’t it neat how many foods blend together? How similar some of the foods we eat from one nationality to another? Pretty neat if you ask me. Nice to see you here! How’s the running going? The weather has been muggy, but tolerable here and I’m getting a ton of yard work in though I am no where near catching up to what the winter has done to my property! Take care!!!!! 😀 And I will check out your bread! 😉 Thank you for sharing.
I will have to give this a try! I love baking bread. Nothing better than home made bread. I don’t buy bread anymore. It’s so simple really.
Once you’ve baked a loaf or two the scary mystery goes away. Just got to get the yeast right (if baking a yeast bread) and you’re set! Isn’t it so difficult to buy bread anymore once you’ve baked your own? Also knowing what’s in my food is a huge factor for me! I could eat fresh bread daily! Good thing I don’t have too many projects that take up my time! Hahaha! Glad you stopped by Jason! Hope you have a great day! 😀
I don’t see a reason to buy bread anymore. It’s just so simple to make my own. I like knowing what’s in my food also. Have a lovely day hun!
Don’t you feel the same goes for making tortillas too? So easy. Yes, it takes a minute or 10, but knowing what’s in our food is so important! Thank you and back at ya for a lovely day! It has to be! The sun is out, I’ve got a few dogs at my feet…I get to reply to wonderful people like you! Yep…day is getting lovelier by the second! Hugs to you! Koko 🙂
Koko, this is a beautiful loaf of bread…mmm mmm mmm so good..
Take care and happy baking to ya, from Laura
Laura it is so yummy! I’ve messed with this basic recipe over the years. It’s a good thing I don’t have the time to bake often! Hahaha. It’s been a wild couple of weeks for me here. Then again, when you have 13 four legged fur babies, it’s always wild! Wonderful to see you here as always 🙂 Hugs, Koko
Koko, no wonder you’re so busy. I had no idea you had a bakers dozen of four legged fur babies to take care of and love. What a joy it must be for you.
Take care my dear and happy blogging to ya, from Laura ~
Yes a fun loving, crazy, happy bunch. I must blog about the story of how it all came to be! I am on my toes from the moment the sun comes up until, oh about…1-2 am! Hugs, Koko 🙂 P.S. And hmmm, I might title it: “How the Bakers Dozen Came to Be!” Stay Awesome Laura! Really, you seem to be able to always make me smile! 🙂
Koko, I’m jumping with excitement over your post about the Bakers Dozen.. I think this will be a wonderful, loving story.. Can’t wait…. hugs to ya my dear, from Laura ~
That is a beauty, baking is one of my loves as well and I know the satisfaction of eating home made bread. Bravo!
Thank you so much! I remember a gazillion years ago making my first bread! As the saying goes…”I’ve come a long way baby.” Though I am not a pro by any stretch of the word, I do have a lot more fun! It’s wonderful to have you here! And thank you for taking the time to comment. You’ve made my day! Take care! 🙂 Koko
You make me hungry and want to bake….haha
Hi Gaia! Yeah I totally want to bake a loaf right now! Sadly, i’ve got a list a mile long that needs my attention more! 🙂 The sun it out and all the dogs are begging for my attention too. Maybe a walk with each one and a hunk of bread in the other hand! I do have some left over! Pop it in the toaster and slap some butter and jam on top! Wow…now you’ve really got me hungry! Hahaha…thank you for stopping by Gaia! Hugs to you and have a happy day! 🙂 Koko
This looks so good. I’ve tried making braided bread like this before but it’s never turned out that uniform. Nicely done.
Uniform can be impressive, however…any bread out of the oven still tastes amazing! 😉 Perhaps my luck is from braiding my own hair! I hope you will continue baking bread. Have an awesome Wednesday and thank you kindly for commenting! Koko
It sounds simple; that always gets me nervous! It looks absolutely marvelous. Keep your fingers crossed for my success!
Thank you for visiting my blog site as well. I hope to see you back in the future. Stay healthy and happy.
It really is easy! I am a super busy gal that rarely sit still. I’m telling you if I can do this, so can you! I am wishing you the best in a successful loaf! I made French onion soup last night and I took this bread and sliced it in 1/2 inch slices, buttered them. Tossed em in the oven under the broiler 2 minutes. Ladled out the soup and layer two slices of this bread on top with shredded New Zealand cheese. Okay point is this bread is versatile. Do it! 😉 I’m happy you came by. Healthy and happy is the way to be! Take care! Koko
I loved your response. My personality is slow moving, methodical and very focused. You seem more like a multi-tasker who would find 10 minutes of inactivity stressful. Put the two of our personalities together and we likely have a well balanced individual. 🙂 Looking forward to future postings!
I do need to force myself to take a slow moment. I guess I equate “do nothing” with lazy. I do multi-tasking to get things done. My down time is jogging on the treadmill while watching Netflix! I should read more of your posts. I know I could learn something about slow-down 😉 Hope your weekend is amazing! I’m building concrete steps! 😉
I love homemade bread. It’s the best.
Yes it is! I had the last bit of it last night! Great seeing you here Liam! Enjoy your day! 🙂
I have nominated you for “The Real Neat Blog Award”. Congratulations! Please have a read of my latest blog for the criteria https://meicouture.wordpress.com/2015/06/14/the-real-neat-blog-award
I love the braided look, Koko. With such skills, you won’t need to buy bread again. 🙂
I only buy it when I’m desperate! Hahaha. It’s just wonderful to know what’s in the foods you eat. Good to see you here Nadine. I hope your day is a lovely one! I’ve been outside chasing butterflies with my puppy! Hugs! Koko 🙂
Oh, I love that – chasing butterflies with your furbabies. I know mine would love doing that, too. 🙂
You’re right. It’s better when you control what goes into your food. You’re inspiring me to become more self-sufficient where my food is concerned. I prepare my meals, yes, but not when it comes to staples like bread, nut milks, among others. At least we grow some stuff that we eat.
Cheers, love, and keep chasing butterflies. xoxo
Doesn’t veggies taste better when you grow them yourself!? Like tomatoes; So good right off the vine! Every bit helps and you keeping s garden is fantastic. I’m still learning how to grow nice plants. Everywhere I move to is a new learning curve! Have a lovely day Nadine. 🙂
There is nothing better then home-made bread, i agree here! Your creation looks smashingly beautiful, Koko 🙂
Thank you Sophie! Braiding the bread was super fun. I noticed your a vegan; I have other breads I make that are vegan too, I will make a point to post! It’s wonderful having you here! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. Bloggers like you keep me going! Enjoy your evening!!! 🙂
I am not vegan, I am an omnivore but my husband &I eat vegan 5x/week because we feel better this way! x
Ahhh! Sorry my mistake. I eat according to the way I feel. There are some days I mostly have liquids. Activity level also is a big part to how I eat. I apologize again for the mistake. 🙂
Oh now I want bread! Freshly baked and braded 🙂 This is how my grandma used to make her “coffee bread”. You have more (and healthier) ingredients, but the look was exactly the same.
Sometimes you have to toss healthy to the wind. What’s life if you can’t live a little? I bet grandmas coffee bread was amazing! It’s been insanely busy over here atkokosplace. Real life has me running around like a chicken with my head cut off! I am missing all your posts and believe me when I tell you just how much I MISS them! I need to set some me time aside and a cup of tea and your blog! Seeing you here always makes me smile. Hugs, Koko 🙂
Oh my! That looks so good! Can almost smell the fresh bread through the computer 🙂
The house smelled amazing. The warm smells permeated through every room! It was delightful! Nice to have you here Amy! Please come back again. I’m off to check out your blog! Yay! 😀
I need to write down the recipe and try it later. Baking has always been my weakness and only God knows where I can find really good yeast in this part of the world! (LOL!)
I wish I could send you some! Hi Hari! Been awhile! How have you been?
I’ve been super busy with all the cooking and training a new guy at work. The positive thing is that new guy is a good kid and I learned a lot of new culture things from him. 🙂
That’s wonderful to learn. Sounds like you might have more stories for us all!!!! 🙂
I do , I do! I am making the illustration for a new tale! 😀
I’m super excited. Hari really look into publishing. You can do it yourself for minimal cost and you can even have them printed on demand. But your book would make an excellent coffee table book. Large with your wonderful illustrations. I would want one. It’s part of my culture too! 🙂
Ah, yes, I am very interested into writing books of old tales.
I will learn more about online publishing! 😀
Looks so good!! Love fresh bread. 🙂
Thank you so much! Same here! The first slice when it’s still warm…. Thank you for coming by. Best wishes for a wonderful day! Koko 🙂
I like to bake I’ll have to give this recipe a shot.
Awesome! And it saves well too. I’ve had this in the refrigerator and still hold up nice to slice up. 🙂
We haven’t bought bread in over a year
That’s terrific. Cool to know what’s in your food too!
Wow looks amazing!!!!
Thank you! So hard for me to buy bread now that the mystery of making it is gone. Hahahaha. 🙂
I’m definitely going to try this recipe! Thank you for such clear directions! ❤
It’s a good bread. Pretty tasty. It’s a good bread to eat hot with butter, with soup, making sandwiches and even frittata! Thank you for reading. Enjoy your weekend. Koko:)
I’m starting to get hungry just by reading your suggestions! 🙂
Have a nice weekend too 🙂
Hahahaha! And I’m due to bake another! 🙂
I would love to see how that turns out 🙂
Really yummy i will give it a try
It’s been so fun perusing your blog. I love all your recipes. I’m definitely going to be giving them a try! Thank you kindly Lynz for being so generous with your comments and time. 🙂
Thank you KoKo!
The bread looks so delicious! If…I mean, WHEN I make it (using your wonderful recipe) I have to be careful not to eat the whole thing myself!
That’s my problem…. I have to make sure I have people around to eat this with me, otherwise, dun, dun, dun, dun! Hahahaha. Happy to have you here! Have an awesome day! 😉
wow!! look so cute and yum! 😀
Thank you! Yeah, I have to be careful when I bake this I don’t eat the whole thing! If I make homemade butter…I’m done for! 😉 Thanks for popping in. Have a great weekend to come! Koko:)
This looks amazing!
Try it. It taste so good. It makes a nice bread pudding too if you don’t eat the loaf be fire it starts to stale. Oh and French toast too! 😉 happy you made it by. Have a great weekend! 🙂
oMG, it looks really good
It tastes even better. Warm bread fresh out of the oven….oh my! I can smell it now! Teehee. I hope you give it a try. Perfect time to bake. Happy Fall! Best to you! Koko 🙂
This looks awesome. I will try to make it!
Awesome! You’re gonna love it! 🙂
Cool thing! I have NEVER ever baked something with yeast (somehow I am too afraid that I might kill it) … but this looks really easy! I think I’m gonna try it out and I hope I’ll get something out of it! 🙂
I was scared at first too. When he yeast doesn’t froth you have to ask yourself two things… Did I use too hot of water or milk— or is the yeast too old. Just give it a try. This bread is really yummy and great for many things. And if you don’t eat it all, it makes for a great bread pudding or many other dishes that call for day or two old bread! It’s great toasted too (even if bread is a little old.) Also keeps in the refrigerator. I appreciate you commenting and reading. Take care!
Koko, what a marvellous place you have created here in your blog! Such diversity! It’s a pleasure to follow your endeavours! thnx for letting me discover you 🙂
Your comment is so thoughtful and kind. I needed that today! 🙂 I’m happy you’ve found me. I hope to see you again. May happiness follow you! Happy fall!
Bread looks good :)))) tastey yo!!
Thank you! It is super good. Give it a try! 🙂
Man that looks simple, yet impressive results! I’m going to make this. I have made bread (in bread maker…) but this looks well within my skill set. Thanks for sharing.
Absolutely you can do this! It’s quite tasty and with hot butter! Amazing! Hahaha. Enjoy!
Oh my….I shouldn’t have opened this post page….gluten doesn’t love me….but your bread looks so perfect…I would say…stooooop….don’t eat it…you share a bunch of great healthy ideas…from Himalayan salt…to coconut oil…..to homemade butter…arggggggg….great post!!!
Hahahaha…I am glad gluten doesn’t bother me. Bread is a weakness of mine, so I try not to bake too often! 🙂 Nice to see you here France. Hope your day is wonderful!
AH! I’ve been searching for an easy bread recipe. I will try this one and let you know how it goes hihi
I love this bread. Right now I am on a no grain thing. Once off it, I am going to celebrate with some of this! Hahaha. 🙂
By the way….and braiding the bread sure makes a lovely presentation! Friends get impressed! And it’s really so easy to do! 🙂 I love that.
Yes I think we start to eat with our eyes so a good presentation or a good looking dish never hurts! 😀
So right you are! My mom has a saying…”Your eyes are bigger than your stomach”. She says that when we eat too much because our eyes just get so greedy! 🙂 Hope your day is a gorgeous one! 🙂
This looks delish I need to try it. I love fresh baked bread thank you!
I am such a sucker for a good bread. I am learning now to make “wild yeast”. Back to how bread was made way back when. So far, so good, the yeast is growing. I can’t wait to share it with you all! Thank you for checking it out! Have an awesome day and weekend to come! 🙂
Cannot wait to see how the wild yeast works and if it changes the taste or how the bread rises
This wild yeast makes sourdough bread. There are some tweaks to make it more sour or mellow. Super excited to see what happens. 🙂
This post made me so hungry! Now that I’m living away from home I really miss the smell of fresh baking – this definitely brought back some memories! 🙂
Glad to hear! Any good bakeries to try? I love fresh bread. If I’m not careful, I could eat the whole loaf myself! 🙂 Thank you for popping in! Take care!
I was never (like never ever) a bread-person. Cake, cookies no problem but bread? Dead end. And now guess what? It worked! Your recipe just worked and I am still standing in the kitchen gawking at the first time I got it right. I added a little too much yeast I believe for it has a slight, somewhat bitter note in it but it doesn’t bother me at all. Thank you very much for sharing:)
Haha! Glad your bread making was a success and happy you are enjoying eating it too! Thank you for commenting. Nice to know someone is reading. 😉 I hope today finds you happy and tomorrow even happier and so on and so on….😁
Thank you! I wish you the same – as well as ongoing creativity so we can all keep on enjoying your recipees:)