Posted By Jonathan on July 31, 2014
Here at Sheltering Woods we make all our our own bread. From loaves to tortiallas, we make it. It may seem like a lot of work, but it really only takes a few moments of our time in the long run. The time spent mixing, kneading, rising, and baking can all be done while doing something else (listening to the radio, watching a television show, book on tape, etc.) and you get amazing bread in the end that contains only the ingredients you’re comfortable with. For us, it’s organic, fresh, and local if we can!
To make the whole process a little less grueling, we have started to freeze loaves for later use. We’ll make a batch of dough for four loaves and freeze three. You can purchase frozen dough at the store, so why can’t you freeze it at home yourself? Easy and great to just pull out of the freezer and thaw/rise when you’re needing a new loaf or have unexpected house guests.
The recipe we use for our breads, and really it’s a perfect recipe, comes from 1961 edition of Betty Crocker’s New Picture Cookbook. It’s our go to cookbook with simple and tasty recipes and history.
To freeze bread dough:
1. Mix up your favorite batch of dough, double or triple it for the number of frozen loaves you want to store.
2. Let dough rise only ONCE.
3. Punch dough down and form into desired loaf shape.
4. Wrap in wash paper.
5. Freeze on tray until loaves are completely frozen through.
6. Pull out of freezer and store in a freezer bag or heavy duty tin foil.
7. Put back in freezer and use within 3 months.
Voila! Simple as that. Now, to use the frozen bread at a later date you have two options of thawing.
1. Place frozen dough in a greased bread pan, cover with greased plastic wrap, and let rise for 4-7 hours (depends on how warm your home is for rising time). Bake as you normally would.
2. Repeat the above, but place pan in a warm oven (about 175 degrees Fahrenheit) or in the oven with a bowl of boiling water. Let rise for 2-4 hours. Bake as you normally would.