Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Easy Skillet Bread

I just LOVE bread!  Actually...who doesn't?  There is nothing in the world like a good piece (or loaf) of bread when served with real butter or olive oil. 

I have been working on perfecting a few bread recipes and I am really pleased with how good this easy (no-knead!!!) skillet bread came out.  You know it's good when the people you make it for devour it instantly and immediately request more. 

I will also share the simple recipe for my dipping oil.  Trust me... you will NOT want to make this bread without that dipping oil!



4 1/2 cups of unbleached flour
1 tablespoon sea salt
2 1/4 teaspoon of active dry yeast (or 1 package)
2 cups of warm water (not more than 110 degrees)
1 -2 tablespoons of rosemary infused dipping oil


1.  Combine active yeast and warm water in a large bowl.
2.  Add 1 cup of the measured flour and salt into the bowl with yeast.  Incorporate well.
3.  Continue to add the flour one cup at a time until all is completely blended.
4.  Cover loosely with a lid.  Allow to sit for 1 hour.  DO NOT punch down on the dough!
5.  Lightly oil a medium to large cast iron skillet.
I used the same dipping oil to do so!
6.  Sprinkle some flour over the dough as well as your hands.
7.  Over a clean counter or chopping board gently shape your dough into a disk.
8.  Place your dough into skillet and place a kitchen towel over skilled.  Allow to sit for an additional 30 minutes.
9.  Drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons of dipping oil over top of the bread.  Slash the dough with a knife forming an "X".
10. Bake at 400 degrees F for 35 minutes or until top starts to turn brown.



1 large garlic bulb (cloves peeled and cut in half)
2 tablespoons  dried rosemary
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (flakes)
1 teaspoon sea salt
Olive oil


1.  Place your peeled garlic, rosemary, sea salt and cayenne pepper in a pint mason jar.
2. Fill jar three quarters to top with olive oil.
3.  Take small pot and fill halfway with water. 
4.  Place pot on stove and turn to low heat.
5.  Place mason jar inside pot.  Let the oil and herbs get to know each other in this warm water bath for about 30 minutes.  Do not cover jar as water from condensation may inadvertently be introduced into mixture. 
6.  After 30 minutes turn the stove off but let the jar continue to sit in the hot water until ready to use or serve. 
7.  When you are ready,  just spoon oil with bits of herbs into a small plate as shown above.

Any unused portion of the infused oil can remain in the mason jar stored by a sunny window. The flavors will continue to intensify.  But trust me... it will not last long.  It is that good!  You can use this oil in your regular meals as well.

Friday, June 6, 2014

A Banana Bread Recipe Worth Sharing!

About two weeks ago we purchased a banana bread loaf at the local Amish store.  It was probably the best banana bread I have tasted in a very long time; it was so moist and so full of flavor which made it hard to stop at just one slice. My very picky eaters devoured the entire loaf in a matter of 3 hours.  And at $6 a loaf, I had a compelling reason to learn how to make this at home.  Upon learning from the store owner what her ingredients were, I was somewhat disappointed and set out to make my own healthy version of banana bread. 

And so I did, and it came out pretty darn good! I am an excellent cook but I am not the best in the baking department.  So the fact that my family devoured it in record time makes me feel confident enough to share it with you.

Feel free to adjust any portion to suit your family's dietary preference.
Banana Bread Recipe

4 ripe bananas
1.5 cup of sugar (I used organic)
1/2 cup of melted butter (I used real butter)
2 eggs
2 tablespoons of sour cream (or yogurt if sour cream is not available)
1 tablespoon of vanilla
1.5 cup unbleached flour (I used King Arthur's Organic)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp real sea salt

Step 1
Mix bananas, sugar, butter, eggs, sour cream and vanilla in a large bowl with a hand mixer at low speed until well blended.
Step 2
In a separate bowl, mix your dry ingredients:  Flour, baking soda, baking powder, sea salt and cinnamon.

Step 3
Incorporate dry ingredients into bowl with wet ingredients. I used a wooden spoon but you can also use the hand mixer on the low setting. Blend for about 1 minute until all ingredients are well incorporated.

Step 4
Pour mixture into a loaf pan that has been greased with butter and lightly floured.

Step 5
Bake for approximately 60 minutes at 350 degrees.

Step 6

Thank you for reading and as always, many blessings to you and yours in all of your endeavors.