Monday, October 1, 2012

Home Baked Goodness

I have been on a quest for the past two years to bake the perfect loaf of whole wheat bread.  I have tried many different recipes.  I have tried milling my own wheat from both spring and winter wheat berries.  I have tried using store bought whole wheat flour.  All of my attempts, while tasty, have left a bit to be desired in the presentation category.

Last weekend I tried a new recipe, used a different mixing style, and produced 2 loaves of bread that actually looked and tasted good.  While not perfect, they were a move in the right direction.

I started with this recipe:  100% Whole Grain Wheat Bread

My ingredients

I followed the directions exactly using my Kitchenaid Mixer.  I used only whole wheat flour.  The loaves turned out a little denser than I would like, but the family liked it.  I am going to try a new recipe next time until I get the perfect go-to loaf for daily eating.

Mixing the bread dough in the Kitchenaid

My bread rising

The finished product

My next baking adventure was making chocolate chip cookies for David's birthday party.  This might seem like an easy thing to make, but I have limitations when making any baked good.  David is allergic to eggs.  He was diagnosed when he was eleven months old.  I have tried many recipes, many variations, tried baking with Ener-G Egg Replacer and used various versions of the baking powder+oil+water substitute.  I have tried using butter, margarine (big mistake), crisco and lard (the lard was due to a milk allergy that Joy has thankfully outgrown).

Despite my many, many attempts at cookie greatness, I had never been able to produce an eggless cookie that even came close to the absolute perfection of my mother-in-law's chocolate chip cookies.

The secret ingredient to delicious cookies

Until now.  It may have taken me eight years to figure out the secret, but I did a few months ago.  Enter the Kitchenaid Mixer.  I was on a Kitchenaid kick a while back and decided to try making my cookies with it.  Using the exact same recipe, the only difference being the mixer, my cookies turned out really, really good.  All this time my mistake wasn't the recipe, it was in under mixing them.  Now that I know how to make them so yummy, I only make them when I absolutely have to because they are impossible to resist.

Yummy cookies just waiting to be eaten

So for those of you who are like me and need an eggless cookie recipe, you're welcome.

Egg-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter flavored Crisco (you could substitute butter, but I like Crisco best)
1 tsp vanilla
1 TBSP Ener-G Egg Replacer
4 TBSP water
2 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips

1. Cream sugars and Crisco.  It should be completely smooth when you are done.  Do not be afraid to over mix them.

2. Mix Ener-G Egg Replacer with water in a small bowl.  Add to sugar mixture.  Add vanilla.  Mix until smooth.

3. Add flour, soda and salt.  Mix until smooth.

4. Stir in chocolate chips

5. Drop by spoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake at 375° F for 12-14 minutes until just lightly browned.  Let rest on baking sheet 5 minutes before removing to waxed paper or wire rack to cool.

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