Friday, June 6, 2014

Super Frugal and Delicious Tomato-Basil Soup and Rosemary Olive Oil Bread

I love baking bread, but rarely have the time. Even though it's not a lot of "hands on" work, it is "time sensitive".  I'm at work all day, so weekends are it.  So I have to set  my day in a way so that I can actually be at home for the various parts of kneading, shaping, baking etc.

I managed to do that last Saturday. I'm a fan of The Prudent Homemaker on line and on Facebook, and she had posted a pic of her Rosemary Olive Oil bread on FB.  That inspired me.  I generally try to follow bread directions exactly, but he batch was too big for me and I wanted to use my bread machine. 

I also had a bread recipe from America's Test Kitchen that I've successfully morphed into the bread machine.  My problem with their recipe is that you preheat the bread at 500F.  My oven is not so great at that temperature.  The Prudent Homemaker uses baking sheets, and I use a pizza stone.  America's Test Kitchen sprays the bread for 15 minutes to get a crust, The Prudent Homemaker uses a tray of water (and some other recipes bake inside a cast iron pot.  But I digress.)

So here's the recipe in the end, combining The Prudent Homemaker, The Bread Machine book, and America's Test Kitchen.

Rosemary Olive Oil Bread (adapted from The Prudent Homemaker)
2 c. bread flour: 0.52
2 1/4 c. all purpose flour: 0.46
1 3/4 c. water
2 Tbsp sugar: 0.04
2 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast: 0.04
2 Tbsp rosemary: 0.15 (usually this is free, but my husband killed my rosemary plant)
2 Tbsp olive oil: 0.18

Total: $1.39

Place all ingredients in bread machine in order determined by bread machine.  Put on dough setting and run.

After the dough cycle is done, dump out onto a flour dusted counter.  Dimple the dough with your fingertips.  Shape into a loaf:  Pull two opposite sides of the dough into the center.  Repeat 2 more times, going around in a circle, form it into a ball.

Place a piece of parchment paper on a rimless cookie sheet, and put the bread, seam side down, on top.  Cover with a clean towel or cooking-spray coated plastic wrap.  Put in a warm place to rise.  Let rise 45 minutes to 1.5 hours, until doubled in size and the dough springs back slowly at the touch.

Adjust oven: Put baking stone in the center and a rack below.  Preheat oven to 450F.  Let baking stone preheat for 30 minutes.  

Right before baking, place a shallow pan with water on the bottom rack.  Remove the plastic from the bread, and slice an "X" in the top of the bread with a sharp knife (I SUCK AT THIS).  Slide the parchment paper with the dough onto the baking stone.  

Bake at 450F for 15 minutes.  After 15 minutes, reduce heat to 400F and bake for 25 more minutes, until internal temperature is 200F.

Transfer to a wire rack, discard parchment, and let cool for about 2 hours before slicing.

Enjoy.  My family LOVES this bread.

I made this with The Prudent Homemaker's Tomato Basil Soup.  I cannot believe I never made this before.  It was SOOO good.  I had a bunch of tomatoes in the freezer from a #10 can.  We have been collecting carrots from the CSA.  I found chicken stock from 2011 in my freezer (yeah, I tossed that).

Tomato Basil Soup (from the Prudent Homemaker).  Follow the link for the instructions!
2 Tbsp olive oil: 0.18
1 large onion, chopped: 0.50
10 carrots, peeled and chopped: 0.80
1. 5 Tbsp dried basil: 0.23
2 cloves garlic, chopped: 0.10
2 28oz cans diced tomatoes: 1.50
4 cups chicken broth: free (make my own)
1 can evaporated milk: 2.00

Total: $5.32 for 16 cups, $0.33 per cup


Joanne said...

That is one GORGEOUS loaf!! Looks so perfect for soup dipping.

Biz said...

The secret to getting a good X on your bread? Super sharp knife and spray the knife with Pam - that way it won't stick to the dough. :D

I haven't made bread in months! I need to fix that - stat!