Let me just start off by saying that I love soup and bread. Who doesn't? I will say that I definitely eat less bread then ever before thanks to the vitamins I take, but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy a slice every now and then....especially when it's homemade!
Now honestly......how many of you make bread....by hand? No bread machine? I'm thinking not many. I believe the art of baking is dwindling. I blame it on all the major conveniences in the world and the fact that we are "so busy" these days. Who are we kidding.....we aren't that busy. We are just filling our days up with other things. Absolute truth.....try turning off the computer or the TV....it's amazing what can be accomplished when you do that. Anyway, I decided that in my 43rd year on this planet that I was going to get good at using yeast....making bread if you will. Something about living in the middle of nowhere and relying on my own handiwork in the kitchen is satisfying to me (and to my family). Making bread has always seemed like a daunting task to me. First of all, I had seen how much work it is from my grandma and my mom. I didn't truly understand the process (which I'm still learning). Perhaps I made it bigger than it is in my mind, but kneading something by hand for 20 minutes doesn't appeal to me in the least bit. So.....I happened to stumble upon a recipe called Beginner's No Knead White Bread. Stop the presses! Now, this title grabbed my attention! That was mean.....beginner and No Knead sounded amazing to me. So, I checked it out and I decided right then and there that I could and would make it.....right then. I'm a seize the day type of gal. Sometimes if I don't do things right away they don't get done. So.....Carpe Diem it was!
If you want an official recipe that you can print out, here is the link to the actual recipe: http://www.breadworld.com/recipes/Beginners-No-Knead-White-Bread
If making homemade bread has always seemed like climbing Mt. Everest to you.....trust me, you need to try your hand at this recipe. I've made it twice now in a week's time.....and it's been absolutely perfect both times! Here is the recipe:
4-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 packet Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
3 tablespoons sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup water
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter OR margarine
Combine 1-1/2 cups flour, dry yeast, sugar and salt in a large mixer bowl and stir until blended. Combine water, milk and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH in 15 second increments until very warm but not hot to the touch (120° to 130°F, butter does not need to melt). Add to flour mixture.
Beat on medium speed of electric mixer until well mixed. Gradually add remaining 2-3/4 cups flour, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.
Cover with towel and let dough rest in bowl for 10 minutes. Stir batter down with spoon. Beat vigorously with a spoon for about 30 seconds.
Pour dough into a greased 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.
Cover with towel; let rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 40 minutes.
Bake in preheated 375°F oven for 35 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.
Seriously this bread is SO easy and SO delicious! Make it and let me know how it turns out for you....I would love to hear from you!
So, Lasagna Soup. I have blogged about this before....2 years ago approximately. It was good, but I love trying new recipes. I was searching for soup ideas on Google and happened upon this recipe. Here is the link: http://carlsbadcravings.com/easy-one-pot-lasagna-soup/
I won't type it out here because it's simple for you to click the link above and get it for yourself. You can even print it out.....it's worth it, I promise! The only thing differently I did was that I made my own Prego with tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and this and that of Italian spices. I do that a lot.....I improvise as we live 30 miles from the nearest grocery store.
Anyway, here are a couple of pictures from my cooking adventure:
The finished soup was amazing! We topped our with parmesan cheese. It made quite a bit too so the 3 of us had lunch the next day plus I froze a container full. I love it when recipes stretch like that. I hope you make this and that you like it as much as we did. All 3 of us gave it a thumbs up. Happy cooking!