Sunday, September 19, 2010

Convertible Cooking Challenge September 13, 2010

Bread... baking bread to save bread… as in $ dollars. Confused? Let me explain.
I’ve dug out my bread machine to make the most expensive bread ever! BUT, it is
a justified effort to “save bread”…money! Hard cold Cash… as well as GLUTEN from
our systems.

Recently, I read a Yahoo finance piece that told me The Wall Street Journal's
10 Money Moves to save money during this recession…I’ve included it below. Number 8
on the list mentioned buying and using a bread machine. It alone could save
hundreds of dollars per year on single store bought bread loaves. No telling
what other monies would be saved without the unnecessary impulse shopping we all
seem to do when we run to the grocery to “just buy bread and milk”. The Yahoo
article mentioned nothing of “Cows” but I will here, having recently discovered
shelf milk.
Boxed cow’s milk fresh for drinking, canned evaporated milk, Almond milk, Rice
milk, Coconut milk, Goats milk, Soy Milk
, dried milks or canned all sit nicely
waiting on my shelves if I purchase ahead and plan to use it in my cooking
experiments. They have made my life easier and faster…and less clutter in my
But here I’m now adding bread, keeping myself out of the store except for fresh
fruit and vegetables or cat and dog food.
This week I made two different kinds, sliced them right up and ate the results
so fast that there are no pictures! Sorry…but really bread machine loaves aren’t
the prettiest loaves you’ve ever seen anyway.
Bob’s Red Mill “Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix” Gluten Free-wheat free-dairy free 
mix was great.
I made it using Silk Soymilk from a box I’d found in my discontinued isle of my
local Winn Dixie grocery.

It came through with a lovely sour dough flavor that I should have expected as
the 1 2/3 cups of soymilk flavor was boosted with 1 tsp. of vinegar suggested
For San Francisco Sour Dough Lover’s, I would highly recommend mixing it like
that again.

The next batch I tried was the Gluten-Free Pantry’s** “favorite sandwich bread

I was happy to find it in my discounted food section as well marked down to
$5.99 per box with other multiples residing with it.
My husband loves his “little sandwiches” as he calls them, but the change over
to wheat free/gluten free has been wonderful for us, so to master his bread
issue, I was eager to experiment at any price.

Every bread mix or whole loaf of gluten free bread we’ve purchased is in this
price range… Ouch! And I have yet to mix my own from scratch to adjust these
prices some, but the four other bargain boxes were waiting if this brand passed
our test.
The instructions were the same adding water or milk, but this time I shaved the
price down on my finished loaf by using water, vegetable oil verses the melted
butter option, but using 2 large eggs instead of the other suggestion of 1 egg
and two egg whites…it was just easier for me but a nice idea regarding ones
The mix was designed for a 2 lb. bread machine as Bob’s Red Mill Bread Mix was
suited for a 1 ½ lb. loaf. Both brands used a nicely dissolving SAF Gourmet
Perfect Rise Yeast that claims “not for sale” which is disappointing to us yeast
dough people as it worked well for both loaves.
What was nice was this loaf finished baking...BIG and beautiful. Lovely and
dense, moist enough to make into sandwiches as its label claimed…and it stopped
baking and cooling down a bit for handling purposes JUST BEFORE DINNER!
How lucky could my timing be? Warm with fresh Meyenburg Goat butter and heaven
melted in my mouth…the bread was terrific.
My bread machine makes a lovely round loaf that cut easily for freezing half as
the remainder kept its shape for handling and cutting through the week.
Both brands had me racing up to the store to buy the remaining packages of bread
mixes and eager to experiment again.
Noelle arrived home from her Asheville, N.C. trip carrying with her a new box
of King Arthur Flour*** gluten free pancake mix stating that it was “wheat free,
soy free and nut free”.
With my new $2.00 yard sale waffle maker I was busy making delicious waffles for
breakfast while reading along the box edge that the King Arthur Flour Company,
“America’s oldest flour company” has made a dedicated effort to expand to
produce the”very best gluten-free mixes on the market today” when their
“customers began requesting-no, imploring- us to help them in their quest for
delicious gluten-free baked goods.” Their complete line of gluten-free mixes
include pizza crust, cookies, bread, brownies, flour, muffins and cake along
with this pancake mix.
I could only imagine how much fun I was going to have in the future as the
waffles turned out crisp, soft, delicious and full of Highland Sugarworks Maple
Syrup and butter filled holes!

I added pecans (‘because that’s what Georgians do) to part of the batch as it’s
15 oz. (425gm) size was generous enough to do so. Three of us ate A LOT and I
was still able to freeze some for later.
So far I was on a roll (forgive the pun) with my old bread and waffle machines.
Often when times get a little tight on dough…rethink and make some new dough
with your old kitchen “friends”. Make some bread to save some bread…what a
clever idea.
Here’s to better bread baking!

P.S. This weekend’s yard sales yielded a nice Panasonic Bread Machine with its
instruction manual for $5.00…less than a loaf of bread! Its time to bake some
savings when its… oh, so easy.

*10 Money Moves That Will Always Pay Off

By Brett Arends
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Provided by

8. Buy a bread machine
You want a certain winner? If a $50 bread maker saves you, say, $7 a week on
buying bread, that's $350 year. The easiest dough you'll make. Modern
breadmakers are, well, a piece of cake to operate. The return on investment:
600% in year one and 700% after that.
Wall Street's best year ever? Just 74%, in 1915. Ha. Amateurs.

**Gluten-Free Pantry
2055 Blvd Dagenais O. (West)
Laval, Quebec, Canada H7L 5V1
***King Arthur Flour
Norwich, Vermont 05055
****Highland Sugarworks
Pure Maple Syrup
P.O. Box 56Websterville, Vt. 05678

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