It seems to me like bread machines were so 1999. Maybe even earlier than that. I don’t remember exactly because I definitely wasn’t using one back then. Do people (besides me) even use them anymore? I’m awfully glad I was never a trend follower because, man, do I love my bread machine. It’s not fancy, but it sure gets the job done. I always have a jar of yeast in my fridge and bread flour in my pantry, which means I can have fresh bread whenever I want. Well, actually, whenever the baby naps and I have 15 minutes. 5 to come up with the idea to make bread and 10 to put everything in the bread machine. Whatever. Fresh bread for everyone!
There are loads of basic bread machine recipes floating around out there. I’ve yet to found “the one”, so in the meantime, I make one that’s good enough. Some recipes call for letting the yeast “bloom”, while most bread machine instructions tell you to place all the ingredients into the machine and just hit start. My experience has been that letting the yeast bloom definitely gives a softer, fluffier and taller bread. The soft and fluffy part is good, but I have a small capacity bread machine, so the tall part ends up looking a little silly. Either way, I don’t think you can go wrong.
My rosemary plant is still thriving on the deck right now, and it was practically demanding to be baked into bread. You could substitute any of your favorite fresh or dried herbs and I’m sure the result would be equally super.
- 1 cup warm water
- 2¼ tsp bread machine yeast (or one packet active dry yeast)
- 2 tbsp white sugar
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 cups bread flour
- 2 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- Combine the warm water, yeast and sugar in the bread machine
- Let sit about 10 minutes or until yeast bubbles
- Add olive oil, salt, rosemary, garlic and lemon zest to bread machine
- Select Basic or White bread setting and press Start