Easy homemade yeast bread, with a variety of variations of herbs, spices, flavors or just plain, is just that; easy!
Easiest homemade bread anyone can make. Just the mention of the word sounds comforting. That’s because bread is the number one comfort food. We want it when we’re happy, or sad, or feeling under the weather. Bread mysteriously, comforts. Well, maybe not so mysteriously.
Homemade Bread Is Comfort Food
Feel good food. Did you know there is actually scientific fact that proves that foods high in fats, salt or sugar tend to sweeten our mood by stimulating the brains’s reward system? A kind of ‘hug yourself’ through the stimulation of the palate.
Bread happens to provide two out of three of the stimulants; salt and the composition of flour… carbohydrate starch, which by the way, has three or more molecules of sugar, a kind of time-release capsule of sugar.
Schmear some butter on that bread and you got yourself the perfect ‘hug yourself’ comfort food reward!
Make Your Own Bread
I promise you, You Can! I raised four children as a single mom. Fortunately, built into my home, was the place where I worked, a beauty salon. I was able to earn a living for the five of us, keep an eyeball on them, and throw something together quickly for dinner during any given break I had to scurry upstairs to my kitchen and prep a home cooked meal, daily.
Bread, was my lifesaver. It made the simplest of meals feel special. A big, crusty, delicious hot loaf of bread out of the oven to serve with a soup, stew, roasted meat dinner, made the house smell of love, and a sparkle in my children’s eyes when they came to the table after a long day for each of us.
Easy Homemade Yeast Bread Is Cooking With Love
As my children entered the teen years, they each found a special niche in the kitchen they enjoyed doing as their contribution to the family. My third child, when he was twelve, wanted to learn to make mama’s bread.
He was a natural and the recipe so easy, that it was impossible to have it go wrong. We were all so proud of our little computer geek turned out to be the family bread maker! Because of his ease with which he found bread making, I am telling you that you too can make a simple loaf of bread.
Confidence Comes Fast With Yeast Breads
Once you are confident with a simple loaf of basic bread, the sky’s the limit. From there, we can make every kind of bread; sweet bread, rolls, stuff the bread with anything you like, add herbs or olives to the bread, even make burger buns.
You will never buy burger buns in the store again once you enjoy your own. We can play around with breads made from various other types of flour. Yes, they are a little more work but they too are amazing to make.
Olive and rosemary bread – if you could bite into a loaf of this bread with your eyes closed, you could almost smell the Mediterranean country side.
Butterfly Pea Flower Bread – Whether purple or blue this bread is too pretty for words and easy to make.
Pretzels – The Easiest Yeast Bread Of All
Nothing says ‘After School Snack’ like a platter of Homemade Pretzels. The pretzels I like to make for the kids (pooch too), are simply made from my basic homemade bread dough recipe; rolled thin after rising, shaped anyway you like and bake. Dip in a little mustard or spread a little peanut butter and you’ve got a delicious snack for the kids, or You!
Sweet Yeast Bread
Once you have made a few loaves of basic bread, you are ready to spruce up the recipe for something more. Let’s say a sweet tooth hits, or you feel ready to impress family and friends with a loaf of some type of sweet bread; one they will never forget, you might be ready to try your hand at stuffing your bread dough with lots of sweet goodies.
A few added ingredients to the basic bread dough recipe, such as an egg, a sprinkle of sugar and maybe a little butter and the bread dough is transformed into a richer dough that can be handled the same as the basic bread dough.
Everything imaginable can go inside a rolled out dough then rolled back into a log and baked to perfection. One of my favorite sweet fillings, beside cinnamon and raisins, is a paste I make by throwing some dates, cacao and nuts into the processor, roll the paste out and set it on top of the rolled out dough, then roll it into a log, with all that yumminess tucked inside. Words can NOT describe how delicious!
Savory Homemade Yeast Bread
Let’s say you have a busy work day ahead of you, but want something easy to throw together at the end of the day. Let’s say, you may even have a few friends over at the end of that long work day, simply because it is relaxing to end the day chatting with a few friends over a bite to eat and a few cocktails.
This bread dough can be made a day or two in advance, once it rises it can be put in a zip bag and stored in the fridge until ready to use. When you are ready, it gets rolled out and made into a pizza or stuffed with delicious antipasto type ingredients and rolled into a Stromboli. Kick back, bake and enjoy a fantastic meal with little effort!
Stromboli is practically a slice of pizza rolled into a loaf of bread. Stuff it with anything you want but the basic homemade bread dough recipe here, is what you will use for this Stromboli recipe as well as all your favorite open-faced pizzas!
- Mixing bowl
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoons
- Kitchen towel – to cover dough while rising
- Basting brush
Easy Homemade Yeast Bread
Yeast – 2 teaspoons
Sugar – 2 teaspoons
Salt – 1 tablespoon
Flour – 3 – 4 cups, give or take plus some for surface to roll out
Water – 1 1/2 cups room temp water.
Optional Extras – Egg wash to brush on top before baking. Egg wash is just one egg mixed with a drizzle of water. Coarse salt to sprinkle on top before baking. Any seeds on top before baking. Options are just options.
- Pour the water into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast and sugar on top. Let it sit for 5-minutes to form a foam. Sprinkle the salt and add a little flour. Stir. Slowly add flour and stir until it becomes difficult to stir. Now it’s time to get a little messy. With your hands, begin to press added flour into the dough, add more flour, and keep pressing and folding, adding flour until it forms a lovely plump ball. There is no need for strenuous kneading, just a simple press, fold, flour, press, fold, flour until the dough is no longer sticking to your fingers. The video above examples how it is done.
- In a clean bowl, pour a little oil to glaze the bowl. Place dough ball in the oiled bowl, cover and let it sit in a warm (not hot) place to rise. It will rise in about one hour. A little longer in cooler climate.
- Once it rises, sprinkle a little flour on top, and punch it down. On a floured surface, roll into a long log, and transfer to a baking sheet pan. (At this point the dough can be stored in a zip bag in the fridge for later use). If using for pizza, simply roll out the dough into a round and transfer it to your pizza pan. If stuffing; simply roll out the dough, toss cheese, tomatoes, salami or anything else you might want, roll it into a log and transfer to baking sheet to bake.
- Preheat oven to 400 – Once the dough is on the pan, the time it takes for the oven to get hot, is a perfect amount of time for the dough to rise a little more again. If you are using an egg wash, now is when you can brush it on top of the dough, sprinkle with coarse salt, or seeds. A brush of water or milk can be done instead of egg wash but the egg wash gives it a golden shiny finish.
- Bake for 18 – 20 minutes, until golden on top.
All of the bread varieties look and sound divine! Thak you, Robin, for sharing your family recipes and your passion for cooking!
Thank you so much Gloria! I love making bread and hope you find one of my recipes that will become your favorite!