Zoe and I are working on a new book, but she’s not allowed to tell you what it’s about if you see her demo in New York City on Thursday

Zoe at Architectural Digest

Zoe will be doing baking demonstrations at the 2014 Architectural Digest Home Design Show in New York City. Her event this Thursday, March 20, 2014 is only open to “the trade,” folks who are in the home design or cooking industries. But this supposedly includes food bloggers, so please see the show’s website for details if that applies to you. The Friday, Saturday, and Sunday events are open to the public (though Zoe won’t be presenting those days).

I’m sure she’ll appreciate the change of pace, because the last month or so has been nuts–we’ve been feverishly editing our next book. Unfortunately, our publisher will kill us if we say more about what’s actually in it. If you see Zoe in New York Thursday, she’s been instructed to say that mum’s the word. We can say that it has nothing to do with The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, which came out five months ago. Our new project is a completely different kind of book filled with completely different material.

Stay tuned…

Green Four-Leaf Clover Broccoli & Cheddar Buns for St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick's Day bread

They say that everyone’s Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, and I hope that’s true, because I love the Irish–for their music, their literature, their Guinness Stout, and believe it or not, for their food.  It’s been many years since I was in Ireland, but I remember swooning over the fresh, wild salmon, buttered potatoes (of course), and the moist and flavorful brown bread.  But brown bread’s not particularly festive (or green!), and Zoe and I don’t have a recipe for classic Irish soda bread, which is made without yeast (for that, I rely on James Beard’s recipe in Beard on Bread– the first bread I ever made).  Then Zoe reminded me about our broccoli-and-cheddar buns in Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  Turns out that four-leaf clovers aren’t especially Irish, but they’re very lucky!  Sprinkled with cheese, these make a lovely accompaniment to corned beef and cabbage.  One little disclosure– the broccoli doesn’t make it all that deeply green, as you can see.  Some would have used green food coloring, I suppose.  Bain taitneamh as do bhéil!  Hearty appetite (I think)… Continue reading

Jeff on National Public Radio’s The Splendid Table, with Lynne Rossetto Kasper today

Jeff with Lynne Rossetto Kasper

Last month, I taped a segment with Lynne Rossetto Kasper on The Splendid Table, on National Public Radio. It airs today, but if you miss it you can click on the “Play” button above to listen (it starts at 1 minute, 19 seconds). Thanks Lynne!

Our first book offer came because of Lynne’s show… you can listen to my call-in in 2000 (click here). 

Braided Peasant Bread

braided peasant | Breadin5 09

Braiding doesn’t just have to be for sweets. I found myself with some 2 week old – (truth be told it was closer to 3 weeks) dough and it was a little wet to shape a nice tall boule. We always recommend using older dough for flatbreads or baking it in a loaf pan, since it can lose some of its rising power in the later stages of storing. Well, it turns out this older dough makes a wonderful braided loaf, with lots of flavor and a really open crumb. Because the braid isn’t as domed as a boule, the older dough has all the rising power it needs.

My dough was made with Gold Medal Organic All-purpose flour, a bit of rye, whole wheat and Platinum yeast by Red Star. Like I said, it was almost 3 weeks old, but this technique can also be done with fresh dough and really any of our doughs, not just the Peasant dough recipe will work great.

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Mushroom Garlic Thyme Stovetop Pizza

mushroom garlic thyme stovetop pizza | bread in 5

Pizza for dinner is always a favorite around my house, and while I’ve tried it every which way: classic margherita, deep dish, hand tossed, and grilled, it had been awhile since I’ve made a stovetop version. Our Artisan Pizza and Flatbreads in Five Minutes A Day book has a great recipe for pizza made in a cast iron skillet, and after making it quite often this past week I remembered how easy and tasty this method is. It’s perfect for dinner, but especially for lunch; pizza is ready quickly without even turning on the oven.

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Another Radio Interview: Central California Public Radio with Rick Kleffel

Rick Kleffel The New Artisan Bread in Five

We did an interview with Rick Kleffel of Central California Public Radio (and the Agony Column) last week, to talk about The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. It was a blast as always, thanks Rick! If you didn’t hear it on the NPR affiliate 88.9 KUSP, check out the podcast here, or Rick’s review of the book here

Our interview with ABC-7 News’s Steve Dolinsky in Chicago: the podcast

Hungry  Hound photoWABC-7With Steve Dolinsky after podcast at Floriole

Former Minnesotan Steve Dolinsky left Hopkins to make his fortune in Chicago as ABC-7 News’s “Hungry Hound,” with a great show about food in the Windy City. We’ve been on Channel 7 with Steve before (view segment), but most recently, we did a podcast with him from Floriole Bakery and Cafe in Chicago, back on October 28, right after we launched The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Great bakery, and a great time taping the podcast with Steve. Click here to listen (go to “Artisan Bread Made Easy, Jan 29, 2014″)!

Savory Bread Pudding – how to use up leftover bread

Savory Bread Pudding | Breadin5

When we wrote our first book we were testing dozens of loaves a week, and despite our healthy appetites, we just couldn’t consume all that we baked. Our neighbors were happy to take some of the bread, but there was more than a city block could consume, so we started making all kinds of recipes using up the leftovers. There are beautiful salads and puddings that are perfect for leftover (even stale) bread. In the New ABin5 we added this Savory Bread Pudding, which can be made with just about any loaf you bake. Well, I may have found the exception…I tried this recipe with some leftover Panettone and my very opinionated and vocal family requested that I not use that particular bread again for this. My husband described it as Thanksgiving stuffing, but richer. I liked it, but I was alone. The panettone does make exquisite sweet bread pudding however. They all agreed that peasant bread and/or challah is the way to go. The peasant and challah breads alllow the flavors of the caramalized onions, spinach, spices and cheese to shine through. It is perfect for breakfast (a little bacon in the mix would be fabulous) or as a side dish with dinner.

This week I got a chance to bake with Elizabeth Ries and Chris Egert on KSTP-TV’s show Twin Cities Live. They are great sports and we had fun tossing pizzas together, one of them is a bit more skilled at the toss, but I won’t mention names. Here’s the clip:

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Christmas Stollen

There is 20 inches of snow on the ground here in Minneapolis and the temperature has dipped WAY below zero. This is why we Minnesotans are such bakers, it warms up the house and makes everyone happy. Christmas Stollen is a great tradition this time of year. A sweet loaf that is studded with fruit, spiced with cardamom and a little treat of almond paste runs through it. Once it comes out of the oven we dust it with a thick layer of confectioners’ sugar to look like the snow outside. If there is any left the next day it makes amazing French toast.

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Braided Chocolate and Cocoa Nib Bread… and announcing a winner of the giveaway!

braided chocolate and cacao nib bread | bread in 5

I’ve been slightly enamored with braided bread this Holiday season – it’s been popping up all over our Pinterest boards, in loaf, wreath, cake, and roll form. I was especially interested in a krantz cake Tara from Seven Spoons made recently; her loaf was braided and twisted so beautifully, and I was sure there was a way to turn it into a Bread in 5 version. Some brioche dough and chocolate-cacao nib filling later, and I had a winner. This bread is a looker, the chocolate leaving swirls throughout and the sugar glaze giving the finished bread a sparkly sheen. It’s sweet but not overly so, and the cacao nibs give just the right amount of crunch. It’s a great edition to your Holiday baking line up.

And, as promised, we have a giveaway winner….congratulations Janna, we’re sending you the Emile Henry Bread Cloche, Gold Medal Flour, Platinum Yeast from Red Star and a Signed Copy of The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Enjoy!

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