Don’t you believe it!
We have so many bread baking options and tools that nearly anyone will be able to make bread baking work with your schedule.
The first step: decide which type of dough preparation best fits your time schedule and tastes.
When I began my bread baking journey, I wanted to know how to make delicious bread in a short time. Through trial and error, I learned how to use my bread machine for a hands-off dough mixing/kneading process that allows me to bake picture-perfect loaves in about 2 hours. Since I work from home, this process easily fits into nearly any day when I have either a morning or afternoon to mix up the dough, raise it and bake it. I can make white bread, whole grain bread, six-grain bread, dinner rolls, sweet rolls, etc. all with this same easy process.
But maybe your routine takes you away from home, and maybe no two days are exactly the same. If that’s the case, you can make use of mixing dough and refrigerating it until you’re ready for a final rise and baking. Refrigerated dough will probably take 60 to 90 minutes to raise and be ready to bake. Generally, a two-pound loaf of bread bakes within 30 to 35 minutes.
You can shave the mixing time in half when you create a “bread mix” by measuring out and sifting together all your dry ingredients (except your yeast) and keeping them on hand till you’re ready to bake. Refrigerate for freeze your mixes so they don’t become stale. When you’re ready to mix dough, prepare the liquid ingredients, add the dry ingredients and mix it all together.
If you want the health benefits of sourdough bread, you can mix/knead your dough in 15 minutes, place it in a bread pan and allow it to rise for approximately three hours, then bake it for 30 minutes. This type of bread baking is completed over a span of about four hours. It delivers a delicious, soft, moist bread that adds some beneficial gut bacteria to your diet. It is also easier to digest than breads baked with commercial yeast.
One other sourdough bread baking option involves using a recipe that calls for lightly kneading your dough two or three times throughout the day. These types of bread typically have a strong flavor because the dough ferments throughout the day. For those who enjoy the tang of a strong sourdough taste. Once ready to bake, the dough requires 30-40 minutes baking time.
Among the ways I help speed up baking time is to begin by laying out all my equipment (bread machine, measuring cups, measuring spoons, digital thermometer, spatula, etc.), then gathering all the recipe ingredients, and then start mixing it all together. This helps me avoid measuring mistakes or leaving out a recipe ingredient.
There’s no question that, in the beginning, baking bread might take you somewhat longer because you’re learning a process that fits you, testing out different recipes, etc. What you’ll find in the long run is that baking bread is one of the healthiest, most rewarding tasks you’ll ever do for your family and yourself!
Don’t wait any longer – start baking your own bread!