Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Bread for All Seasons

Sometimes you find a recipe that is good for everything. It is easy to make, inexpensive and versatile for creating many different things. A friend gave me this recipe 20 years ago, and people are always asking me to share it. Once you try it, you will get hooked and enjoy the many things you can do with it.

This bread can be used throughout the year and on holidays. On Valentine’s day, you can make a heart shaped loaf of bread, on Easter, make a bunny out of bread, on the 4th of July, make hamburger and hot dog buns. On Thanksgiving, try making crescent rolls and at Christmas make a wreath. Use your creativity to make up your own ways to use this recipe or try some of the variations listed below.


Dissolve 1 pkg. Yeast (1 Tablespoon) in ½ cup warm water. Add 1 Tablespoon sugar, 1 cup warm water (but not hot – you don’t want to kill the yeast by using water that is too hot), 1 ½ teaspoons salt, 1 heaping Tablespoon shortening. Add 4 cups flour. Knead and let rise until doubled. Shape and let rise. Bake bread at 350, rolls at 375 until brown. Rub butter on top after baking while still hot if desired.

I like to double this recipe because that way I only get the mixing bowl, tablespoon and the one cup measuring cup dirty.

  • Get a handful of dough and roll out in a circle. Put pepperoni and grated mozzarella cheese on top. Roll up and seal. Let rise 20 minutes, then cook at 350 degrees until lightly brown. You can also do this with Canadian bacon or cooked Italian sausage and cheese. After they are cooked, you can freeze these for lunches when needed. Once I even used hot dogs and cheddar cheese when I had no other meat in the house. Just make sure that you seal it properly so the hot dogs aren’t exposed.
  • Roll out into pizza dough whatever size you want. Brush spaghetti sauce on top and add your favorite toppings. Cook at 375 degrees until done.
  • Divide into loaves and cook at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until done. Use loaves as bread for sandwiches or make French toast.
  • Divide into loaves. Roll out each ball of dough and put cinnamon sugar and raisins, parmesan cheese, or herbs on it. Roll up and seal.
  • Make cinnamon rolls.
  • Make dinner rolls whatever shape you want.
  • Let kids have fun by making bears, alligators, etc. Cook creations at 350 degrees until lightly brown.
  • Make breadsticks or pretzels and roll in butter and cinnamon sugar or parmesan cheese or sprinkle cheddar cheese or coarse salt on top. You can also brush with egg white and put poppy seeds or sesame seeds on top.
  • Make hamburger or hot dog buns.
  • Use to make a fruit strudel.
  • Braid and make into a loaf or a wreath. Try rolling out and putting butter and cinnamon sugar and roll up, seal and shape into a wreath and then cut 1 ½ inch slits all around it.

Enjoy this recipe that is easy to make, inexpensive and tastes great. It has been one of our family favorites for years.

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