We eat a lot in this house, really, a lot. And I cook most of what we eat. Most days I enjoy cooking dinner, making lunches, loading the dishwasher – but like us all, some days I look at my family and think “Didn’t I just feed you yesterday? You mean I have to do this again?”
In an effort to slow down, to be mindful of the creating and the joys of feeding those you love, I decided to add a new rhythm (I like how rhythm sounds rather and routine) to our days. Imogen and I are going to make a new bread once a month and I will share the recipes and the outcome here with you.
^^ Listing all the breads she wants to make. She is pretty sure we need to make bread for January and February, since I did say we would make bread every month. ^^
Sun Bread, by Elisa Kleven
Our first monthly bread is sun bread. Imogen picked it since we have the book and we have never made the recipe on the back. I thinks she’s most excited about shaping her bread into a lion, so we changed the name, it is now “lion sun bread”.
I know I constantly extol the virtues of making bread, this is the fourth post on bread, the second in a row, and just the first in a new series! What can I say, I love the stuff. Not only does it taste great, it is also the perfect unit of study for a classroom or a homeschooling family. Since I do not homeschool, I am not going to create a curriculum based on bread for Imogen. We might do an experiment with yeast, and I will continue to checkout books on bread from the library, but otherwise I prefer to approach it with an “unschool” attitude. By being part of the activity, she is learning even without explicit instruction.
Every year I do a week-long look at bread in my classroom, and we continue to come back to it during the year. It is a great grounding point for the class, always coming back to bread. If you are looking for more resources and lessons to go along with bread making, check out the end of this post.
* adapted from Sun Bread by Elisa Kleven
- 2 packs of yeast (or 4 1/2 tablespoons)
- 3 tablespoons warm water
- 3 eggs
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 stick of melted butter
First, check the book out from the library!
In a small bowl mix lukewarm milk and yeast. Let sit for at least 5 minutes, or until foamy.
Mix 3 eggs and 3 tablespoons of sugar in another small bowl. Imogen did not want to pull the shells open after she had cracked them, for some reason I always had something in my hands or was grabbing a towel when it was time to pull the shells open. I did this because I knew she could do it, and I knew it wouldn’t frustrate her.
In a separate larger bowl, mix 2 cups flour and melted butter.
Add egg mixture to flour bowl and beat well (I think a stand mixture would have been a better idea than a wooden spoon)
Knead on a greased and floured surface for 8 to 10 minutes. I thought the dough was going to be super sticky and impossible to knead, but it really came together and was silky and smooth.
Kneading is always better when done to a song.
Place dough in a greased bowl and cover. Allow to rise in a warm place for an hour (I was roasting sweet potatoes, so I just set mine on top of the oven)
When you dough is about double in size, punch down and knead for a few minutes.
Shape dough into your preferential celestial object, or animal! It’s best to make you creation on your grease baking pan. We used the tip of a sharp knife to cut in the face.
Allow bread to rise for another hour.
Preheat oven (they say 425*, I say that results in burnt bottomed bread!) to 375*.
Bake bread for about 20 minutes. I like the tapping test, your bread is done when it sounds hollow when you tap it.
Of course I forgot to take a picture when it was done, and now we only have about half a lion sun left. It was a little too brown (that’s why I suggest lowering the temperature), but it was beautiful!
Enjoy with butter.
All about yeast – information and six science experiments Red Star Yeast
A collection of 25 bread recipes for children – from Kids Activities Blog
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