One of my best memories of childhood was when my mom would make homemade bread in her bread machine. It was a gift from my grandpa one Christmas, purchases he made for his two daughters after dragging himself out into the madness that is Black Friday. As crazy as this might have been, and as much as he might have looked back at the situation and thought. “What was I thinking?,” he knew this was a gift my mom would enjoy and that would provide food for her family.
Many years later, I can still remember the delicious aromas that would be pouring out of the machine when I got home from school. She would start the process in the morning, setting the delay button so it would finish baking right in time for dinner. Although every recipe in the book would say, “Wait for Bread to Cool Before Cutting,” we never followed this rule. Sure it would fall in the middle when we sliced our way through with a knife. Yes the bread slice wasn’t as perfectly square and straight as it would have been if we waited. We didn’t care though, we liked our bread steaming hot with just a touch of butter. I would always go for the middle slice instead of the end pieces, because I liked the thick, doughy center the best.
Naturally, I wanted to put a bread machine on my wedding registry in hopes I could make the same memories with my little family now. A friend of my husband’s actually gave it to us for a wedding gift, with a card stating, “It has 3 speeds!” It was a reference from the movie Old School that was meant to be a joke between the gift giver and Tim, but the truth is that I was so excited about receiving this gift! He even stuck with the theme and bought us the same one re-gifted in the movie.
Well I have made a few basic breads in the machine, and they have come out great! I am hoping to make a variety of kinds now that I have had a little practice and know what I am doing. I noticed a recipe for basic pizza dough that I thought would be fun to give a shot. I put all the ingredients in the machine to make 2 pounds, which included:
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 and 3/8 cups water, at room temperature
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
In just about an hour and a half, I had enough dough for two pizzas. I rolled the dough into a big ball, wrapped the dough in floured saran wrap, and placed in the refrigerator over night. The next evening I got out the dough, separated into two pieces, and placed one of the dough balls in the freezer, wrapped in floured saran wrap and foil, the other would be used to make pizza that night.
Italian Pork and Chicken Sausage Pizza
- 1 package Italian Pork and Chicken Sausage, (A lighter option than typical Italian Sausage)
- 1 bottle of your favorite Pizza Sauce
- I package of fresh, sliced mushrooms
- Enough shredded cheese to your liking. I did a mix of mozzarella and colby and sprinkled just enough to lightly cover the top.
- Dried Basil
- Dried Oregano
- Set oven to 425 degrees
- Roll out dough onto lightly oiled and floured baking sheet
- Stretch dough until it covers the baking sheet area
- Spread sauce across crust, all the way to the ends of the dough
- Remove sausage from casings and brown in pan over medium heat
- Add mushrooms on top of sauce
- Place browned sausage over the top of mushrooms
- Sprinkle cheese, oregano and basil on top
- Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes until crust is cooked completely through
- Broil for 1 minute until cheese is browned and bubbly
- Cut into 12 slices and serve alongside a tossed salad
I can’t wait to try a bunch of different bread recipes. I want to make sweet breads, whole wheat breads, and maybe even experiment with different flour substitutes.
Questions for the Readers
What is a favorite gadget/machine of yours that may not be found in every kitchen?
Many people thought my bread machine would just take up space, but I use mine all the time! I highly recommend one!
Do you have a favorite bread or pizza dough recipe?
I want to get creative in the kitchen!