Saturday, November 10, 2007

In my family, we bake. While some genetic trees carry with them the ability to be good cooks, there are a subset of good bakers. Mennonites are both. Frequently, it is in baking that we reach the pinnacle of Yum. My dear late Great-Aunt Norma had a recipe that she loved and passed down for electric mixer bread. She had kids, as did everybody back then (or very nearly everybody) and as the mother of a curious toddler I can attest that the kids really do get everywhere and want every second of your attention. All The Time. Especially if Mommy's doing something interesting. Even more so if this interesting thing is not something that she thinks is safe for Toddler fingers to be into. I would love to be back into baking bread every other day in my kitchen. When this baby gets born I'm going to be back kneading my bread dough and enjoying that warm yeasty smell. But where to find the time to really get into it? Corners will have to be cut somewhere, and that means my hand mixer is going to have to give way to something more hands-off and childcare friendly.

This is where a stand mixer is going to save my sanity. The Hamilton Beach® Mixer is a good choice for me. Hamilton Beach® Stand Mixer comes in colors, and will make it even easier to get my kids cooking and baking with me as part of their daily life. My mom never saw a point in banning me from the kitchen even though I now know I was often more trouble than help -especially in clean-up time. Her point was that if I learned on the real stuff I'd learn better and be able to cook instead of only knowing “pretend cooking” on equipment that did not behave or react like the real thing. Which I'm sure saved my tushie countless times when I did start preparing meals all on my own.

Electric Mixer Bread:
1 1/4cp warm water
2Tbsp soft shortening
1tsp salt
1 pkg yeast
2Tbsp sugar
3 cp flour

Proof the yeast in a warm mixing bowl. Stir all in but one cup flour; beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add the last cup of flour and beat in with a spoon. Cover and let rise 30 minutes. Beat about 25 strokes. Pour into buttered loaf pan (dough will be sticky) and rise, covered, until it comes to 1/4” of the top. Bake 45 minutes at 350degrees.

Eclectrics® Mixer

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