Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Baking bread- yummy and box for Afghanistan



I was just in the mood today to bake bread! I needed to pound something and that seemed like something good to me. Not only can I pound it, give my arms a workout, but... we get to eat it later!! WOO HOO!!

I made enough loaves to share with a few special friends here too.

Here is the recipe I love to make. It takes me about 3 1/2 hours total with rising and baking and everything.
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Bev's Even Easier Wheat Bread
3 Tbsp of active dry yeast

2 3/4 c warm water (110 F) or so 6 cups unbleached white flour,
1 cup wheat flour

3 TBsp honey

2 tsp salt

2 Tbsp olive oil


Sprinkle yeast on water in a large bowl, and stir till blended. Set aside for 5 minutes. Add 3 cups white flour and 1 cup wheat flour, honey, salt and olive oil. Slowly add 3 more cups flour and mix by hand.

When mixed together turn out onto floured counter and knead with hands, pound it, knead it, mix it, beat on it (!) for 5 minutes.
Place back in an oiled bowl, turn it over in the oil, then put in a warm place and let double in size. (about 45 mins)

Knead again, beating down and kneading with hands for several more minutes, adding a little more flour if needed so dough becomes smooth and elastic.


Cut bread into 3 loaves, and perhaps a couple of smaller ones too! I always seem to get more bread out of my recipes than similar amounts in other recipes!

Place in greased (I use veg. spray) bread pans. Place in warm place again and let rise till doubled. (45 mins) Remove from oven and heat oven to 375 degrees.
Then bake in a 375 F oven till light brown and done- about 45 minutes.


Remove from oven and spread a little butter on the top of each loaf.
This tastes incredibly good, sliced and served with:
HONEY BUTTER...
1/2 cup soft butter mixed with 1/2 cup honey and 1/2 tsp cinnamon.

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I also have a box on my kitchen table that I am getting ready to mail to our soldier, Steve over in Afghanistan.. It's mostly an abundance of newborn baby hats, but there are a few other things in there too. We had so many extra hats from Crafting Angels last time and I know we will get more as you readers are so incredible about sending those for our kits. I figured I could pack a few in the box to help those little ones so far away, over in the cold.

If you would like to help with the 'Baby Project', please click HERE! Send any gently used clothes or toys or handmade warm hats, mittens, scarves etc. Blankets would be really welcome! I know they are serving 150 FAMILIES in the refuge camp near their base, as well as 2 orphanages.

And please, no lectures to me, about how we should be helping out 'own'. I am well aware of that and I do, not that it concerns anyone besides me and my Heavenly Father, but I know people are upset by this project sometimes. I get the emails about that...

I have already posted a response to this in one of the other message responses, so I will spare you. But, I know in my heart that we should serve anywhere our Lord leads us, and I know the families in Afghanistan need our help right now. Our US Soldiers NEED us to send things right now too, as it does as much good to lift their spirits as it does for ours as we make those items. They need us too.

For other projects:
http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/charity-links.html

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Ok - 'nuff said on that subject. =) Don't wanna bring anyone down - there are projects out there for everyone on this planet to help with in their own ways. Just choose one that suits you, maybe in your own house or neighborhood, ok? =) Hmmm that bread is smelling really good and it's only been in the oven about 10 minutes! I do love to make bread as it is really therapeutic and since Mike was transfered up north, I just have not been in the mood to make any or to take a 'day off'. I have been filling every minute of every day to kill time I guess. Not real healthy!

Speaking of bread... I spilled a little wheat flour on my kitchen floor and didn't clean it up right away, guess who ate it!? Yup-- 'Cookie'! I didn't get a photo of her face but it was hilarious! She had wet wheat flour all over her mush! I was afraid it would harden so I just washed it off.
She is a character! I am loving
Shih-Tzus more and more! She is just dear.

Well, time to take the dogs outside, and get my bread from the oven. Have a most wonderful day today! Maybe do some holiday baking for your kids, grandkids, or neighbors!!

Church Window Cookies
No BAKE! And they only take about 10 mins to make up! Always been a traditional cookie in our home at Christmas :-)
1/2 cup butter or margarine
12 ounces chocolate bits
1 cup walnuts, chopped
10 ounces colored marshmallows
14 ounces flaked coconut Instructions:
Melt butter and chocolate bits over low heat. Allow to cool slightly. Stir in nuts and marshmallows. Spread coconut on wax paper. Divide chocolate
mixture into two rolls. Roll in coconut. Place in refrigerator for 24 hours. Cut in 1/2-inch slices.

HUG the ones you love!
BevQ




5 comments:

Missy said...

Hi Bev

I hope that you don't mind if I put a link to the baby project page on my blog. I think that this is wonderful. I have really enjoyed your pattern website, thank you!

As a military wife, I wanted to let you know about the priority mail flat rate boxes ($8.10) that can be used. These are great if you have heavy things since the savings could be substantial!
You can order boxes directly from www.usps.com or you can also order boxes for shipping to military personnel at:

http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Nov2004/n11232004_2004112312.html

Thanks again for all that you do! I will be looking through my stash this weekend and hopefully getting a box going soon.

: )

Helen in the UK said...

I think it is the GIVING that is important - each individual can decide where to give to best suit them. Keep up the good work :)

jerrie said...

I think Helen is right.I think people has to give where they fill is right for them and let others give what is right for them.Don't cut people down for giving.More people need to think of others no matter where they are.
The bread sounds good.I will try it one day when have time to bake.
Still doing slippers for others.Have twenty pair done now for gifts.Thank you for the pattern.My co_workers and friends will love them.
Thanks. Jerrie from Texas

Anonymous said...

You're an inspiration and I couldn't agree with you more. There is need everywhere, and I find it hard to believe people give you flak for supporting charitable work in other countries. Those little babies in Afghanistan (and Rwanda and Mongolia and every other country where the need is so great) are God's babies too, and so are their parents for that matter even if they were born into a religion

diem said...

Thanks, Bev, for so many great ideas, so many opportunities to share our love and abundance, and so much inspiration to encourage us to keep on giving. What we all need--and what makes the world a better place--is lots more love, not hatred and criticism.

I have done charitable knitting for many years--although I didn't know to call it that. I wanted to knit, but felt I was burdening family and friends with an overabundance of my less than perfect creations, so I started giving items to a local thrift store, figuring that surely someone would want them and that the store could make a few cents or dollars as well.

A couple of years ago I found out about afghans for Afghans and immediately started knitting little sweaters. What drew me to this charity initially was not so much the people it serves but the fact that they wanted items made with wool, whereas most US charities want synthetics. I much prefer knitting with natural fibers so I was thrilled to find this group.

And, in the process of knitting, I have become much more connected emotionally and spiritually to this cause. Oh--and my knitting is improving!

Although no one has ever given me flak for making things for people in another country or of another faith, there have been a few hints about helping local charities. It's certainly possible to knit for more than one cause, if one so chooses. Find your niche and do what you love.

On that note, I'll get back to my knitting. I'm finishing a scarf/hood that my daughter requested--and it's RED! Somehow I ended up with a lot of extra yarn (merino/alpaca) and now you've inspired me to join the Red Scarf Project.

Thanks for everything, Bev!