Daily Bread

If you’ve been craving bread’s comforting goodness lately, make a few loaves and share them. Fresh-baked breads are a pleasure to the eyes and all the senses. Get some flour on your hands, and let others in on the blessing.

AN ESSENTIAL ELEMENT

Few things say “I care about you” more than bringing a fresh loaf of hand-shaped bread to a neighbor or friend experiencing life’s challenges.

Bread blesses those who receive it. But anyone who makes bread will tell you there are benefits in store for the baker, as well. There is something empowering about creating incredibly delicious and nutritious fare using only flour, water, yeast, salt and little more.

BAKER’S BLESSING

There’s a pleasant rhythm to kneading—press, turn, fold, press, turn, fold—as your hands work the dough to develop the gluten structure for optimum texture. Your whole body rocks gently and serenely. Working dough can take up to
12 minutes, giving your mind time for peaceful reflection away from a world of distractions. You’ll get a mini workout, too, as the dough gradually changes from soft and pliant to sturdy and resolute.

While the resting dough rises, stand amazed at God’s design for living yeast. Like a magic ingredient, yeast gives flavor, volume and palatability to a fundamental food.

TIPS TO SUCCESS

Bread-making should not be stressful. As long as the yeast stays at lukewarm temperatures, rather than hot, bread dough is quite forgiving. If you knead in too much flour, and your dough becomes too stiff, add a few sprinkles of warm water until the batch is workable. Each time you make bread, your hands will gain discernment about dough consistency and your preparation skills will increase.

Find other confidence builders in “Recipe 101: Signs You’re Doing It Right."

IN THE BIBLE

Bread has been a staple food of every culture from Old Testament times to the present. Wherever people gather, there are breads or other baked goods.

Bread is mentioned 366 times in the Bible. Bread makes its first Old Testament appearance when Adam is told by God, “By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread” Genesis 3:19. Bread is used in the Bible as a symbol of God's provision such as “daily bread” in The Lord's Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13).

Commonly made of wheat (Exodus 29:2) in biblical times, bread was also made with barley (2 Kings 4:42). The Old Testament gives ingredients for a special bread. Dense and grainy, it was made with wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet and spelt (Ezekiel 4:9).

Here are a few other Bible mentions of bread:

• When three surprise visitors approach Abraham’s tent, he has bread prepared for them and entreats them to stay (Genesis 18:1–8).

• With a generous gift of 200 loaves of bread, Abigail brought peace to her household and the favor of King David onto herself (1 Samuel 25:1–35).

• The day after the feeding of the 5,000, Jesus says, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst” John 6:35 ESV.

TRY THESE

Express love to your family in a tangible way with the unexpected delight of “Brioche À Tête." Welcoming guests to your home with a pan of “Salted-Caramel Pecan Rolls” cements any friendship. And if someone you know is gluten intolerant, make him or her our “Gluten-Free Fruit & Nut Bread."

RECIPE 101

Signs you’re doing it right

• Using a digital thermometer, verify the temperature of a liquid that will come in contact with yeast. The temp must be within the range given in the recipe.

• To tell if gluten bread has been kneaded enough, slowly stretch an egg-sized piece of dough with both hands. You should be able to see light through the middle of the stretched dough.

• A dough is done rising when it doubles in volume. Additionally, if you make an indentation in the dough with your finger, it will not fill back in immediately.

• Fully baked bread will have a golden brown crust. Tap it on the underside, and it will sound hollow.

1 of 8

Few moments in the kitchen are more satisfying than taking hot, freshly-baked bread from the oven. Find out for yourself by trying our recipes for baked goods. Make extra, so you can give some away. Breaking bread has been a mark of Christians since the beginning.

Close
2 of 8

Classic Baguette

France gave the world the simple, incredibly tasty baguette. This long, slender loaf of white bread has a thin, crisp crust and chewy interior. It’s intended to be baked and eaten on the same day. Despite limited ingredients, the right airy texture is a challenge to achieve, even for experienced bakers. But be encouraged! Beginners’ baguettes are consumed with as much delight as those from seasoned bakers.

Recipes: Classic Baguette
Close
3 of 8

Brioche à Tête

Because of its buttery richness and tender crumb—as the interior texture is called—brioche can be considered a cousin to the croissant. Yet aside from longer mixing and rising times, making brioche is as straightforward as preparing traditional yeast dinner rolls. Enjoy the satisfaction of creating and serving this French favorite, discovering in the process how to form the classic tête, or head, on top.

Recipes: Brioche à Tête
Close
4 of 8

Salted-Caramel Pecan Rolls

When it comes to comfort food, warm and fragrant pecan rolls rise to the top. Roasting pecans in butter and salt imparts deep, rich flavor to both the topping and filling in these tender cinnamon spirals. We recommend using Saigon cinnamon, one of the most potent varieties available. Don’t be surprised if you’re begged to make these again and again.

Recipes: Salted-Caramel Pecan Rolls
Close
5 of 8

Olive-Rosemary Boule

Savor fragrant rosemary and the occasional salty bite of Kalamata olives in this tender hearth loaf boasting a pleasant, chewy crust. With a name that means “ball” in French, this rustic, free-form bread is easy to make. Scoring just before baking adds visual interest and creates an expansion point so the bread can grow evenly as it bakes.

Recipes: Olive-Rosemary Boule
Close
6 of 8

Herbed Angel Biscuits

Angel biscuits are leavened by yeast and baking soda and/or baking powder to ensure light, well-risen biscuits with subtle yeast-roll flavor and texture. Pair these moist, cheddar-herb biscuits with steaming vegetable soup or a creamy chowder.

Recipes: Herbed Angel Biscuits
Close
7 of 8

Gluten-Free Fruit & Nut Bread

With moistness and flavor that rival and even surpass wheat bread, this gluten-free bread has enthusiastically raised more than a few eyebrows. Effervescent sparkling water, instant dry yeast and the lifting quality of eggs make this no-knead bread remarkably light. Unlike most yeast breads, this bread should be stored in a fridge.

Recipes: Gluten-Free Fruit & Nut Bread
Close
8 of 8

Multigrain Wheat Loaf

This bread combines the wholesome goodness of wheat, rye, oats and corn in a hearty, honey-sweetened loaf worthy of centerpiece status. Easier to make than it looks, this eye-catching bread is simply two layers of dough, stacked and snipped at intervals to resemble wheat. Chia, flax and sesame seeds add a nutty, healthy crunch.

Recipes: Multigrain Wheat Loaf
Close