Monthly Archives: September 2016

Updates: Sugar, Mediterranean Diet & Pain Control Options.

sugar-photoThe latest news about sugar is right up there with the lies told by the tobacco industry for so long. Apparently, starting back in the 1960’s, the Sugar Research Foundation, has been influencing research regarding the relationship between sugar & heart disease. It has shifted the blame onto fat in the American diet. Research at that time was done by Harvard scientists but funded by the Sugar Research Foundation.

This is important news to me because it uncovers the following problems. First, how powerful specific food lobbyists are & how research can be funded by the very people who don’t want negative information on their product to come to light. The funding group is not always named on the research study, giving you the impression that it is an independent study. This is a good article by NPR, explaining the 1967 situation with sugar vs fat. 50 Years Ago, Sugar Industry Quietly Paid Scientists To Point Blame At Fat “In the article, published Monday, authors Glantz, Cristin Kearns and Laura Schmidt aren’t trying make the case for a link between sugar and coronary heart disease. Their interest is in the process. They say the documents reveal the sugar industry attempting to influence scientific inquiry and debate.” This original study caused scientists & the American public to jump on the non-fat diet craze. We now know that this was a bad idea & that our body needs fat to function. 

I think this new information shows us how important it is to not listen to everything said about what foods are “good” & what foods are “bad”. It is another case to back up the idea of a balanced plant based diet, indulging in favorite foods occasionally & in moderation, while choosing a healthy lifestyle. Overall this is the best way to build up your immune system to fight off diseases.


Old ways Mediterranian pyramidMy old favorite, the Mediterranean Diet has been in the news again. An article by CNN states that Mediterranean diet may be more helpful than statins“The observational study was presented at the European Society of Cardiology conference this weekend. It showed that the people who have had a history of cardiovascular disease and stuck closest to the diet had a 37% lower risk of death compared with those who didn’t stick with it.” The study went on to say that “The diet seems to do even better than one of the most prescribed options for people with heart problems: cholesterol-lowering statins. On average, statins reduce risk of heart problems about 24%, according to earlier studies. That means the diet looks like a real winner to help with heart health.” We can add that to the long list of health benefits.

This film explains why people are confused about the Mediterranean Diet. Unlocking the secrets of the Mediterranean diet : “In his new film, The Big Fat Fix, consultant cardiologist Dr Aseem Malhotra argues that the Mediterranean diet has been “hijacked” by low-fat fanatics trying to convince us that swapping fat for carbohydrates such as bread, pizza and pasta is what it’s all about. “This simply isn’t true,” Dr Malhotra says.

Traditionally in the Mediterranean, foods such as pizza were reserved for special occasions and pasta was eaten as a modest starter, often piled with vegetables. “The key components of a Mediterranean diet are lots of vegetables, olive oil, oily fish and nuts, with no calorie restrictions,” Dr Malhotra says. “Combine that with cutting down on sugar, which was traditionally a rarity in the region, and you’ve got the base of the Mediterranean diet right. And if you get the base right you can eat a little of whatever else you like.” As much as I would love to have pizza every night, using the guidelines below will help to get it right. 

I have realized, from the emails I receive, that there is some confusion surrounding what the Mediterranean diet is & how to apply it. I found the following information to be quite useful. 

How To Nail the Mediterranean Diet

  • Veg: at least 2 servings every meal 
  • Fruit: 1-2 servings every meal 
  • Wholegrain cereals: 1-2 servings every meal  
  • Olives, nuts and seeds: 1-2 servings every day
  • Extra virgin olive oil: every meal
  • Dairy: 2 full-fat servings daily
  • Eggs: 2-4 servings per week
  • Legumes: at least 2 servings per week
  • Fish/seafood: at least 2 servings per week
  • White meat: 2 servings per week
  • Red meat: no more than 2 servings per week
  • Processed meat: no more than 1 serving per week
  • Wine: 1 glass per day for healthy women and 2 glasses for healthy men, with meals
  • Desserts: no more than 2 servings per week

Source: the Mediterranean Diet Foundation 

Serving sizes are confusing too. This is a list I shared in a past Blog.

Bread, Cereal, Rice & Pasta Group: 6-11 servings per day. Serving sizes:

  • 1 slice of bread.
  • 1/2 cup of cooked cereal such as Oatmeal.
  • 1/2 cup cooked pasta.
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice.
  • 1 cup of dry, prepared cereal such as Whole Grain Flakes.

Vegetable Group: 3-5 servings per day. Serving sizes:

  • 1/2 cup chopped raw or cooked vegetables.
  • 1 cup of leafy raw vegetables.
  • 1 small baked potato.
  • 1 medium tomato.
  • 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce (meatless).

Fruit Group: 2-4 servings per day. Serving sizes:

  • 1 piece of fruit or melon wedge.
  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) of fruit juice.
  • 1/2 cup of canned fruit.
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit.
  • 1/2 grapefruit.
  • 1/2 cup of berries.

Meat, Poultry, Fish, Dried Beans, Eggs & Nuts Group: 2-3 servings per day. Serving sizes:

  • 2 1/2 – 3 ounces of lean meat, poultry or fish.
  • 1 egg.
  • 1/2 cup cooked beans.
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter = 1 ounce of meat (1/3 of a serving).
  • 1/3 cup of nuts.
  • 1/2 cup of tofu.

Milk, Yogurt & Cheese Group: 2-3 servings per day. Serving sizes:

  • 1 cup (8 ounces) milk or yogurt.
  • 1 1/2 -2 ounces of most cheese.
  • 1/2 cup of cottage or ricotta cheese.
  • 1/2 cup ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Fats, Oils & Sweets: use sparingly/in moderation. Examples:

  • Dressings.
  • Sauces.
  • Condiments.
  • Gravies.
  • Fats.
  • Oils.
  • Sweets.

This link is my all time favorite. Oldways has a Guide to the Mediterranean Diet that is amazing. Here is what it contains:

  • Understanding the Pyramid Find out how each section of the pyramid contributes to the healthfulness of the Mediterranean Diet pattern of eating.
  • The Science Behind the Diet Understand the Body-Diet connection by exploring the scientific research behind the many incredible benefits of the Mediterranean Diet.
  • Facts and Common Myths Get the facts and avoid the misconceptions about the Mediterranean Diet.
  • Mediterranean Diet All-Stars Discover the nutrition powerhouses naturally found in the Mediterranean Diet.
  • Make it Your Diet Tips for developing healthy eating habits for you and your whole family.
  • Set Up Your Kitchen Stock up on key Med ingredients and keep them within easy reach.
  • Olive Oil 101 Get to know this key Mediterranean ingredient.
  • Healthy New Habits Discover new worlds of flavor, while you update your favorite recipes.

It is worth printing it out & at the very least, bookmarking it on your computer.


For those of you who were fortunate to be a part of the San Diego Cancer Research Institute’s free clinic, when it was open, will not be surprised by the following review. 

NIH review finds nondrug approaches effective for treatment of common pain conditions “Data from a review of U.S.-based clinical trials published today in Mayo Clinic Proceedings suggest that some of the most popular complementary health approaches — such as yoga, tai chi, and acupuncture — appear to be effective tools for helping to manage common pain conditions. The review was conducted by a group of scientists from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) at the National Institutes of Health.

The review focused on U.S.-based trial results on seven approaches used for one or more of five painful conditions — back pain, osteoarthritis, neck pain, fibromyalgia, and severe headaches and migraine — and found promise in the following for safety and effectiveness in treating pain:

  • Acupuncture and yoga for back pain This is true of most pain.
  • Acupuncture and tai chi for osteoarthritis of the knee 
  • Massage therapy for neck pain with adequate doses and for short-term benefit Choose an oncology certified massage therapist. Our Dana Wylie also does lymphatic drainage. 
  • Relaxation techniques for severe headaches and migraine. Energy work, meditation, mindfulness, & art.

It is always good to have a study to back up what we have already observed 🙂 If you haven’t tried any of these modalities, you really should. Look at the Resource page on SDCRI’s  website for therapists we have “vetted”, have experience with cancer patients & who are oncology certified. These modalities can & should be used to help with the side effects of your treatment. They can be safely used while undergoing radiation, & chemotherapy. This is why they are called complementary treatments 🙂 


I hope you were able to try out some of the quick breads. I wanted to tell you that I made more zucchini bread from the recipe I shared last week: Dot Martel’s, or MOM’s, Zucchini Bread. This time I left out the nuts & raisins and added a cup full of shredded coconut. It was fantastic! Next time I will add date pieces along with the coconut. I have never found such a versatile recipe. Loving it!

I will be on vacation next week. Our next Blog Post will be October 3rd. Until then…Mary 🙂


Additional Resources:

Quick Breads

Peanut-butter Bread MHollander

Peanut-butter Bread
MHollander

Last week I talked about the different types of yeast & yeast breads. For those of us who decide to make a bread or muffin at the last minute, yeast breads are out of the question. We need something simple & quick.

At this time of year gardens are overflowing with zucchini. I have made & frozen 6 loaves so far. Today, I am going to try zucchini muffins. These types of quick breads are wonderful to give as gifts or to trade for pickled beets, like I did 🙂

Speaking of zucchini, here is an amazing website, sent to me by our NUT Elf Suzi. 63 Game-Changing Zucchini Recipes! Zucchini Lattice Lasagna looks good. No noodles!

Back to quick breads. Wikipedia defines quick breads as: “Quick bread is any bread leavened with leavening agents other than yeast or eggs. An advantage of quick breads is their ability to be prepared quickly and reliably, without requiring the time-consuming skilled labor and the climate control needed for traditional yeast breads.” 

Quick breads can be made from dough or batter; biscuits to breads. They are made with quick acting leavening agents: baking soda, baking powder or both combined. Let’s look at these two and what they are.


Baking Soda

Everyone recognizes this little box. Description: “Sure, you know our little orange box. But did you know that for more than 165 years, people have chosen pure, versatile, effective, safe, and affordable ARM & HAMMER™ Baking Soda for baking, household, and personal care uses. With countless uses for about $1, no other product does more throughout your home.

 

Baking soda’s chemical name is sodium bicarbonate. It is used in cooking, cleaning & toothpaste. I use it a lot in cleaning. That is another good topic for another time. Baking soda is from a natural occurring mineral nahcolite which is mined, then processed. From About Education“Baking SodaBaking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate. When baking soda is combined with moisture and an acidic ingredient (e.g., yogurt, chocolate, buttermilk, honey), the resulting chemical reaction produces bubbles of carbon dioxide that expand under oven temperatures, causing baked goods to rise. The reaction begins immediately upon mixing the ingredients, so you need to bake recipes which call for baking soda immediately, or else they will fall flat!” I have had that experience! 

Baking Soda does not contain aluminum. If you are concerned about the process used to extract the baking soda from the mineral compound, here is one of the water processed baking sodas: Bob’s Red Mill Pure Baking Soda 


Image result for rumford aluminum free baking powderBaking Powder does contain aluminum. I use Rumford as shown to the left.  Bob’s Red Mill has aluminum free baking powder too.

“Baking powder is a dry chemical leavening agent, a mixture of a carbonate or bicarbonate and a weak acid, and is used for increasing the volume and lightening the texture of baked goods.”  Wikipedia

 From About EducationBaking powder is available as single-acting baking powder and as double-acting baking powder. Single-acting powders are activated by moisture, so you must bake recipes which include this product immediately after mixing. Double-acting powders react in two phases and can stand for a while before baking. With double-acting powder, some gas is released at room temperature when the powder is added to dough, but the majority of the gas is released after the temperature of the dough increases in the oven. 

Substituting in Recipes: You can substitute baking powder in place of baking soda (you’ll need more baking powder and it may affect the taste), but you can’t use baking soda when a recipe calls for baking powder. Baking soda by itself lacks the acidity to make a cake rise. However, you can make your own baking powder if you have baking soda and cream of tartar. Simply mix two parts cream of tartar with one part baking soda.”


I like to eat scones with my coffee or tea. I don’t like to buy them at coffee/tea places because they are too sweet & usually have a frosting. Here is my easy scone recipe that I use at home. I cut the round into 12 small triangles. 

Classic Scones: from Cooking Light  (printable version includes nutritional information.)

These barely sweet scones are delicious with strawberry jam. Try substituting other dried fruits, such as cranberries or blueberries, for the currants. Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 1 scone)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (about 9 ounces) I use Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour, same amount.
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar I have cut this down to 1 tablespoon & it is fine. I don’t like them sweet.
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces I use Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 cup fat-free milk I use Almond Milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/3 cup dried currants I leave out the currents & put in walnuts
  • 2 teaspoons fat-free milk
  • 2 teaspoons turbinado or granulated sugar

Preparation: Preheat oven to 425°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl; stir with a whisk. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Combine 1/2 cup milk, vanilla, and egg white in a bowl. Add milk mixture to flour mixture, stirring just until moist (dough will be soft). Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle surface of dough with dried currants. With floured hands, knead 4 times or just until the currants are incorporated.

Pat dough into an 8-inch circle on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cut dough into 12 wedges, cutting into, but not through, dough.

I don’t do this part: Brush 2 teaspoons milk over surface of dough; sprinkle with 2 teaspoons turbinado sugar.

Bake at 425° for 17 minutes or until golden. Serve warm, or cool on a wire rack.


I found one of my favorite biscuit recipes in the Ocean Beach People’s Deli Cookbook; sold only at the coop. They are vegan & delicious! It makes 6 huge biscuits, I make 12 smaller ones.

People’s Good Morning Biscuits….makes 6 big biscuits: You need to copy & paste to print this recipe.

  • 3 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3/4 cup soy milk  I use Almond milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar I use Braggs
  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance (vegan butter substitute) I use coconut oil

Pre-heat the oven to 450.

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix the soy-milk with the vinegar, then add to the dry ingredients & mix; do not over mix. Add the Earth Balance to the mixture until completely wet. There should be small chunks in the dough.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper & use your hands to break dough into 6 even sized biscuits & distribute onto the baking sheet. Mixture should look kind of rough.

Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate pan & bake for 5 more minutes. Use a toothpick to check if biscuits are done. they may need a few more minutes. My oven required 16 minutes total for 12 biscuits until browned & done. Yummy!


My husband asked me to make healthy cornmeal muffins to take to a potluck with his volunteer group. He forgot them! Luckily I had made a big pot of vegetables & bean chili. They went well with them 🙂 Here is the recipe I use:

Whole Grain Corn Muffins: Oldways 

PREP TIME:10 minutes   TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes  YIELD: 12 standard muffins, or 24 mini muffins

 INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ cups medium grind cornmeal  
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour  
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder  
  • 2 Tbsp evaporated cane juice  I used sugar & decreased it to 1 tablespoon.
  • ½ tsp. sea salt  
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten  
  • 1 cup milk  I used Almond Milk
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil I used coconut oil heated to liquefy (it is cold here 🙂 )
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.  Grease a standard or mini muffin pan and set aside.
  2. Mix together the cornmeal, whole wheat pastry flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.  Add the milk, egg and oil and blend until smooth, careful not to over mix.  
  3. Spoon batter into the muffin tins about ¾ full.  Bake for about 20 minutes for the standard size and 12 minutes for the mini muffins.  When done, tops of the muffins should spring back when tapped.

We call this recipe “Mom’s Zucchini Bread” 🙂 It is being shared with us by our NUT Elf, Suzi Martel. It was a recipe that her mother used. I love this one. I have made it with nuts only & without nuts & raisins. It was perfect every time. Very moist & freezes well. You will have to copy & paste this one.

Dot Martel’s Zucchini Bread

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup oil  I use coconut oil. Tried Olive Oil but didn’t like the flavor.
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar  I cut this down to 1 cup & it was delicious.
  • 3 medium (2 cups) zucchini grated & well drained 
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 cups flour I use Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour, same amount.
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons Cinnamon
  • 1 cup raisins 
  • 1 cup chopped nuts

Beat eggs lightly in a large bowl. Stir in oil, sugar, zucchini & vanilla. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt & cinnamon. Stir into the egg mixture just until well blended. Stir in raisins & nuts.

Spoon batter into 2 well greased (coconut oil), 8X5X3 inch loaf pans. Bake at 375 degrees for 1 hour until it springs back when lightly pressed. Cool pans on wire rack for 10 minutes: remove from pan & let cool.  This never happens! My husband has it 1/2 eaten before it cools. I hide the other loaf to freeze 🙂

Cooks note: Bread freezes well. Breads will keep for up to 12 months. To serve: unwrap & thaw covered at room temperature 2 – 3 hours. Wrap in foil & warm at 350 degrees for 15 – 20 minutes.


My mother & I made a peanut butter bread from my grandmothers cookbook. It is a wonderfully healthy snack. I found this interesting recipe while researching for this post. Note that it contains no flour, no oil & very little sugar.

I made it this morning, very easy. It rose during baking & was a beautiful brown color; photo at beginning of this post. Tastes fantastic! Love it toasted. I can see why the author said she doesn’t want to lose this one.

Low Carb Mr. Peanut Bread-food.com    By Katie Y on April 13, 2011

Photo

Photo by Meghan at Food.com

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 50 mins
  • Serves: 12, Yield: 12 slices

ABOUT THIS RECIPE: “This is a low carb bread recipe that I got from the 24/7 Low Carb Diner, and I don’t want to lose it.”

 INGREDIENTS

    • 1 cup natural-style peanut butter, smooth I bet chunky would be even better.
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 tablespoon vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons artificial sweetener (optional) I used honey. 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Blend peanut butter and eggs until smooth. Add in remaining ingredients.
  2. Pour into a sprayed loaf pan and smooth the top.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes.
  4. Let cool before slicing.

I hope you are able to try some of the recipes above. If you want to try others, look at my list of recipes below. Enjoy baking! 

Until next week….Mary 🙂


Quick Bread Recipes:

Yeast & Yeast Breads

Bob’s Red Mill Bread recipes

Yeast breads are one of my favorite foods, along with french fries & coffee 🙂 Have you ever wondered about yeast? What it is made from & the difference between bakers yeast & nutritional yeast? I will answer these questions & include instructions in making a basic yeast bread along with other recipes. I can smell that yeast bread already 🙂

There are three types of yeast that we hear about: nutritional yeast, brewers yeast & bakers yeast. They all come from different strains of the same organism called Saccharomyces Cerevisiae. Yeast is a member of the fungi family, like mushrooms.


Munton and Fison Ale Dry Yeast As its name suggests, brewers yeast is used to brew homemade wines & beers. The Saccharomyces strains that are chosen to make brewers yeast, are those that produce alcohol. This yeast is live but will not make bread rise.

According to WebMD: Brewers yeast has also been used, anecdotally; which means that there is very little scientific data to back its use, for the following conditions.

  • Premenstrual syndrome (PMS). 
  • Swelling of the colon (colitis) due to the bacteria Clostridium difficile. 
  • Diabetes. 
  • High cholesterol. 
  • Upper respiratory tract infection, including the common cold and flu (influenza).
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Acne.
  • Boils.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Other conditions.

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of brewer’s yeast for these uses. 

It is usually taken in the form of a supplement. If you decide to try this supplement, you want to discuss this with your health team first. It could interact with your medications & your labs.

YEASTNutritional yeast, or “hippie dust” as it is affectionately called, is a “deactivated yeast” grown on molasses. It is washed, dried, heated & then flaked. Because it is not a live or active yeast, it will not make bread rise & will not help in making alcoholic beverages 🙂 It is a good source of vitamin B12.

Nutritional yeast is used in food to enhance its flavor. It has a nutty, cheesy taste. Vegans & vegetarians have been using it for years, me included, to sprinkle onto their popcorn in place of butter or cheese. I keep it in a shaker to put on the table along with other spices. I also add it to pots of beans or other soups to give them a creamier taste. A little bit goes a long way.

FatFree Vegan Kitchen has a great page about Nutritional yeast & its uses: What the Heck is Nutritional Yeast?  If you’re new to nutritional yeast, it’s better to try it a little at a time rather than to dive right into a recipe that uses a lot of it. Try some of the suggestions below, using just a little until you develop a taste for it:

  • Sprinkle it on popcorn.
  • Stir it into mashed potatoes.
  • Add a little to the cooking water for “cheesy grits” or polenta.
  • Sprinkle on any pasta dish.
  • Make almond “parmesan” by blending nutritional yeast with raw almonds in a food processor.
  • Add a tablespoon or two to bean dishes to enhance flavors.

Look at the end of the article for a list of recipes using this yeast as a flavoring. 


Bakers yeast is live. It should never be taken as a nutritional supplement or used like nutritional yeast. It would froth & “grow” in your intestines, causing bloating, gas & other problems. It is only used as a leavening agent.

When using it as a leavening agent, it must be “fed” with warm water & sugar to activate it. Don’t change the amount of sugar called for in a recipe. It won’t work if you do 🙂

This yeast comes as: active dry, instant & fresh. The most commonly used are the packets of active dry yeast. Recipes will tell you which one to use. This slide show from Huffington Post: Baking Yeast: A Guide to the different types, shows each kind & what they are used for.


Should you use an organic brand of yeast to avoid the GMO problem? GMO Compass  states that none of the yeasts above have been genetically modified at this time. It also said that it had been tried in the UK but did not perform well & has not been approved to be sold. 

If you are still concerned about this, here is a link to an organic active dry yeast: Breadtopia: Bioreal Organic Yeast  This is also a great site for tutorials & recipes for breads.

Another good brand that is vegan & gluten free: Bob’s Red Mill: Active Dry Yeast They sell all types of bakers & nutritional yeasts.

Fleishmann’s Products is a common brand that bakers use. They sell active dry, rapid rise , bread machine yeast & more. 

Another brand that is popular is: Red Star Yeast: Yeast Types & Usage They also sell Nutritional Yeast.


Here is an easy, basic, yeast bread recipe.

Basic Homemade Bread Recipe

Basic Homemade Bread Recipe from Taste of Home

Basic Homemade Bread Recipe from Taste of Home 

Here’s a basic yeast bread that bakes up golden brown. I enjoy the aroma of freshly baked homemade bread in my kitchen. —Sandra Anderson, New York, New York

TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 30 min. + cooling,  MAKES: 32 servings

Ingredients: I tried out this recipe, very easy. Turned out like 2 heavy doorstops. My loving husband said he liked it 🙂 The problem was my penchant for changing the ingredients! I used whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour. I recommend that you use the ingredients as listed the first time you make it. Good luck!!!

  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 2-1/4 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar  Don’t change this. It won’t work if you do 🙂
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil  
  • 6-1/4 to 6-3/4 cups all-purpose flour 
 Directions
 
  1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sugar, salt, oil and 3 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, to form a soft dough.
  2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. You can do a little Zumba at the same time 🙂 
  3. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours. Wonderful mindfulness opportunity here!
  4. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough in half. Shape each into a loaf. Place in two greased 9×5-in. loaf pans. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30-45 minutes.
  5. Bake at 375° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and bread sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (16 slices each).

Nutritional Facts

102 calories: 1 slice, 1g fat (0g saturated fat),0mg cholesterol, 222mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 1g fiber), 3g protein .

Originally published as Homemade Bread in The Taste of Home Cookbook 2006, p452


My favorite everyday bread is sprouted bread. I thought about making my own but it is just too complicated. The wheat berries have to be sprouted & then put through a grinder before you can even start making the bread. Here is a recipe for it: Flourless Sprouted Whole Wheat Bread from Vegan Baking. Easier to buy it 🙂

I did try making Essene bread & it was an interesting, yet tasty, experiment. I used this recipe from allrecipes: Essene Bread 

Yeast Bread Recipes:


Before I sign off today…… I just saw this in the news & I couldn’t let it go by without a comment. The FDA has released a news statement regarding antibacterial soap. Manufacturers have one year to take antibacterials out of their soap products. Here is a quote from the FDA: “Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” said Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. In fact,some data suggests that antibacterial ingredients may do more harm than good over the long-term.” 

I now feel vindicated! I have railed against these harmful ingredients, triclosan & triclocarban, since they started appearing everywhere! Soap & water with vigorous, complete hand, washing for at least 30 seconds & you are good to go. No soap & water available? There are some very good natural products out there that you can use. Dr. Bronner’s Organic Hand Sanitizer is just one example.

Here is a good article from NBC News explaining the FDA’s decision: FDA Orders Antibacterials Removed From Consumer Soaps Note at the end of the article is says: “The FDA is also reviewing hand sanitizers and products used by hospitals.” About time.

Next week: Quick Breads for those of you, like me, that don’t have time to bake all day…….Mary 🙂