Have Crust will conquer,
this is for my friend Ed Blackwell ,a cook, a cowboy, an Engineer, but more than anything a Christian man who exudes good character. Thanks Ed for the generous portions of your Dutch Oven Cobbler back in Tennesee. I hope you enjoy.
-Called Get Even Bread-I added 1 cup Rye flour in place of 3 regular flour. I also added 1/2 cup chopped Walnuts and a 1/2 cup of Flax Seed that my Budgie wouldn't eat, then I replaced my Budgie with a Cat.
There is an old adage that says: man does not live by bread alone!
Now in my own never be humble opinion, this is totally bogus statement, and I am really close to being living proof……..someday you can ask my young friend Jordie. Jeremiah indeed loves his bread. And of all the things I really love to cook, its bread and biscuits. My bread and biscuits will cure marital troubles, and make a wife go GA-GA over an otherwise useless husband. So men pay close attention, I shall reveal here the secrets to an incredible married life.
#1- Keep your britches on and maybe if it gets warm, ya can roll up your sleeves. Remember to wear an ample Flour Sack about your “waste” to keep your Levi’s from showing any FLOUR to your roping buddies.
#2- Remember men, Bread is so simple WOMEN can make it.
Okay, we got the real serious stuff out of the way, and the wives are mad enough now to split my head with a clever……. We can get on with the actual fun of making bread and biscuits my way. Forget all those darned measuring spoons, cups and tablespoons. I am a cook looking for a firm European Crust and as few dishes to do as is possible. Success is measured by dishes to be done after wards, and true success is a BOWL and SPOON. Remember keep the bowl as small as possible, it takes a long time to lick out a large bowl.
2 Cups of Bread Flour
2 Teaspoons of Baking Powder
½ Teaspoon of Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon of Sugar
¾ Teaspoon Salt
Mix the above dry ingredients together well
Then grate in an 8oz stick of almost frozen butter, use a coarse grater. Grate a little then mix it in, then grate some more and mix that in, until the 8oz stick is coarsely mixed in. Remember that we do not stand around mixing this stuff for any length of time……….there’s always the NFR, Nascar and a football game to be watched and mixing takes time.
Lastly we can add a cup of cold butter milk, none of it, then grab the rotten stuff at the back of the fridge if you happen to be a Bachelor……….still none, then add 1 tablespoon of Lemon juice to the cup of fresh milk. Allow that to stand for 15 minutes and then add to the mixture above. If you do this right the concoction will appear to be to wet and runny……..that is just perfect. Now absolutely do not listen to yer mother-in-law and her instructions about adding more flour and kneading this stuff. She would be flat wrong with this recipe. Have a hot oven, already up to 475.
Spoon the wet dough out onto a Ford 150 hubcap or a cooking sheet will work I suppose. About 1 scooping tablespoon is fine. Place them with about ¾ inch between the wet dough balls and slide in the oven to cook for approx 15 minutes till the tops are golden brown. Now with all the love in the world, set yer wife down and feed her and her mother one each of these golden crusty gems, if they get up and leave these babies……….well, be thankful I guess. She can always be replaced with a good bird-dog!
Cranberry Prostate Loaf- lets face it. Most men think prostate is that act of lying flat on your belly on the ground..........till they hit 50, then the whole world tells them about the other meaning for the same word. Well good health tells us Cranberries are good for ol'Prostate,here is a loaf loaded with the goodness to keep ya healthy. 1 full cup of dried Cranberries, and 3/4 cup of south Texas Walnuts barely chopped, and the trick is a 1/4 cup Olive oil which gives you a Artisan style Rustic loaf.
BREAD COMES NEXT-
If by chance you like that bread that sticks to the roof of your mouth, having a crust like a dish rag ………this may not be your style of bread. This is a sour dough type bread with a real hearty crust not for the denture challenged folks out there. So beware. A good sized #14 Dutch Oven is the real secret here, along with a bottle of beer.
3 Cups Bread Flour
¼ Teaspoon of Dry Active Yeast………if the born on date goes back to the sixties toss it.
1 ½ Teaspoons Table Salt
Mix these dry ingredients well……..yes, round and round, over and over that’s mixing
Now for liquids, we add ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons of room temp water
Then add ¼ cup mild flavored Lager Bear……..oops Beer
Lastly add 1 full tablespoon of white Vinegar
Mix the liquids well, and pour over the dry ingredients.
If you do it all about correct, you will have what appears to be a very loosely mixed, somewhat floured fuzzy ball of dough. It is just barely mixed, and definatly not KNEADED like a textbook dough would be.
Next step, place the mixing bowl and contents in a warm but not hot place, and just cover it so it stays warm and LEAVE IT ALONE FOR 12-18 HOURS. YES, leave it alone, no peeking, no prodding just time and the wonderful gift of atmospheric autolyzation taking place.
After the set upon time, you can roll the now risen dough ball out on a floured board and very quickly and somewhat lazily KNEAD the bread………..do not strain your self in the kneading process, just a good 12-15 strokes is all. Remember, save your strength, you may have to open another Beer later.
Place the dough ball on a sheet of cooking parchment paper so that it can be lifted and placed in into a hot dutch over before it is then placed in the VERY HOT OVEN. SO, sitting the dough on parchment, the bread is covered once again, and returned to that warm spot to rise for maybe 1.5 to 2 hours.
About 15 minutes before it is time to set the bread in an oven, turn the oven up to 500 degrees and place the Dutch oven inside so it gets darned good and hot. Then lift the loaf of risen dough by the corners of the parchment and settle it down into the very hot dutch oven. Put the lid on the Dutch Oven, and close the oven for 15 minutes. Once that 15 minutes of cooking time is over, we can turn the oven down to 375 and cook for another 18 – 20 minutes.
When this bread is cooked thru, you can lift the loaf and tap on the bottom, you should hear a deep hollow, empty sound………thud,thud,thud....very similar to the hollow sound you here when you rap on a teenagers head these days. The bread will have a dense heavy crust, with a mildly yeasty taste. The shape of the risen loaf will be rather squat with a golden brown top, the inside texture will be earthy smelling and have a open airy structure, it stores well and is good hot or cold. Combine it withe some hearty cheeses like Gruyere of Taler, Pazzosa and maybe a little Cabernet in a tin coffee cup...........this is truly cowboy " Horse de Hoofers"
It’s high time you got courageous, you’ve made a few loaves and had success. Now is the time to let the creator that has been locked inside of you all these many years, now is the time to let him loose. Try adding some nuts, maybe some dried fruit, try cutting it with Muesli, roll it in Oats, or sprinkle it with flour. Son, there’s a whole nother world inside that oven………..but only the bravest will ever see it, let alone taste it. Cooking is supposed to be fun, and recipe rules are ment to be broken.
Yes we are all tongue in cheek here, and you ladies don’t bother sending me hate mail about my chauvinistic comments, I will make it fair in due time……….I will be sure to pick on women next week……….. okay?
Rustic Raisin Bread, it will bring over a nieghbor quicker than a new bottle of Rye. Just add 1 full cup of CALIFORNIA raisins, and if you like a little sweet try a 1/3 cup of Sorghum. For those of you who are Sorghum Intolerant, you can try a 1/3 cup of Demar Brown Sugar. Cinnamon is entirely optional, so just dont add it.
I have done both of these recipes in Dutch Ovens using briquettes and/or coals from Oak. The results were the same no matter if I used coals or an inside oven. Delicious.
Bon Appetite, Good night and God Bless