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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Homemade Bread Makes A Great Dagwood Sandwich

Five homemade bread loaves, mmmmmm!
(Don't forget our contest from July 1-15, great prizes!)

One of our family goals in achieving greater self sufficiency this year was to learn how to make our own bread. Wifey's been grinding her own wheat with her Whispermill (old version of the WonderMill) for most of the year to make brownies and cookies. Yesterday she used her ground wheat to make her first batch of homemade bread.

Wow, was this batch spot on! She had some doubts during the dough stage as to whether it was "sticky" enough. Not sure what that meant but I encouraged her onward. I mean, it looked like dough to me...

So, sometime this week I'll post the recipe for those of  you looking for one or are going to attempt your first bread making. I highly recommend it. The resulting odor of fresh, oven baked bread wafting throughout the house was worth it all by itself.

Light, fluffy and delicious!
We tried it out immediately last night.  I first dipped it in some balsamic vinegar and it tasted fantastic. Then I tried some with strawberry preserves...even better! Wifey sliced some up and tossed it in the toaster to crisp it up for jelly. Kids came crawling out of the woodwork to taste mom's efforts. Unanimously we declared success and look forward to making it on a regular, dare I say biweekly, basis.

The recipe ended up making 5 loaves. Since we only had three bread pans, I offered up the round cake pans for the last two loaves. Ah, but there was a method to my madness you see.  Having grown up with a healthy dose of Schlotzsky's sandwiches (aka Dagwood sandwich, from the Dagwood cartoon), I was eager to attempt my own sandwich masterpiece. I envisioned "The Dadwood Sandwich". [picture Homer drooling, halalaalaalal].

After the mayo & cheese, my hunger tripled!
I started with a round loaf and sliced it horizontally.  I layered it with mayo and shredded cheddar cheese on both halves.  Next I used my own sliced ham, as mentioned in this post (we save money buying whole and slicing it ourselves).  I pre-heated the oven, layered one side of the sammy with shaved ham, then slid both halves into the oven.

About eight minutes later, the halves emerged slightly crunchified covered with gooey melted cheese and baked shaved ham. Mmmmm.....   I quickly sprinkled it with diced dill pickles and jalapenos. If my brain was fully functional, I would have thought to add lettuce from our garden too (DOH!).  I quartered it, served it up for Wifey and me, and washed it down with delicious, ice cold Berkey filtered water.

Schlotzsky's nothing, meet the Dadwood sammy.
Wifey and I agreed it was beyond scrumptious.  A new family menu item has been born to our delight. Since our new homemade bread recipe results in five loaves, we can make three traditional loaves and two Dadwood Sandwich loaves every time she makes bread.  I will SO be the envy of the gang at work when I pull out my homemade sammy at lunchtime.  Eh, I might share...I might not.   :-)

So, if you haven't made fresh bread in YOUR homestead yet, I HIGHLY recommend it.  I'd say it only took about half an hour to make, half an our to rise (in the oven), and half an hour to bake. Not bad at all.  Oh, and don't forget the aroma of fresh baked bread lingering through the house for hours!

What do you do with YOUR homemade bread?

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