Over the past few months, I've had so much fun writing this blog and taking part in the Martha Mondays and Martha Stewart Cupcakes Club. I've truly enjoyed connecting with people from all other the country (and the world) with the same interests as myself. Sometimes, I feel a little odd that instead of going out to eat all the time, I'd rather stay at home and do some kitchen experimenting. The blog clubs have really inspired me to try something new.
So with this newfound courage, I decided to join a new blog group. More than 100 bloggers are embarking on a two-year journey to try recipes from the "Healthy Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" cookbook. Long story short, the book is a whole-grain version of "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes Day."
I've had my eye on the "Artisan Bread" book for a while. I checked it out from the library to figure out how the book's no-knead recipes work. It sounded too good to be true. Just mix the dough, let it rise in the fridge, then bake. No need to knead or rise.
So I finally broke down and bought a pizza stone and the two books. Soon after, I learned of the HBin5 blog group. I immediately signed up. It's a great incentive to actually try these recipes and make my investment in the pizza stone worth it.
I mixed up my first batch of dough last week. I followed the recipe exactly, and miraculously, it turned out great, even for a beginner!
I can't believe something so beautiful came out of my oven! I topped it with butter and my homemade apricot jam. It's a great breakfast bread!
Another great thing about the book is you can make multiple recipes from one batch of dough. I had the dough in the fridge for more than a week, and it was still fresh enough to make these chili crackers.
Admittedly, I was in a hurry when I made the crackers. I didn't roll them out as thin as directed in the recipe. But they still looked like crackers when they came out of the oven. However, I probably won't be making these crackers again. They were a little too much work for me, and I didn't like the chili powder. Maybe another spice would work?
Also on our HBin5 schedule was a wreath-shaped bread, but I didn't have the kitchen shears to make the design. So I skipped it for now.
I had so much fun with this project. I'm looking forward to trying more HBin5 recipes.
If you'd like to learn more about the group, visit Big Black Dog for a list of other participating bloggers.