Boy was I wrong.
When I started to dive into eating frugally, I threw caution to the wind and decided to try it for myself. I looked for something easy, hopefully with very little kneading because that just totally freaked me out, and came across a no-knead bread recipe that has been a staple in our house for years. I've since become a full blown bread baker and I've lived to be able to tell you that there is nothing to be scared of. In the hundreds of loaves I've made only two have turned out to be bricks...and then I chopped them up and used them in the bottom of a breakfast casserole so no loss there.
And is there anything more yummy than warm, fresh baked bread with butter melting into it?
1 package active dry yeast (or 2 1/4 teaspoons of bulk yeast)
2 cups warm water, divided (not hot, just warm to the touch)
4 cups all purpse flour (I've used half white and half wheat before with good results)
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon of butter melted
Topping : poppy seeds, garlic bread seasoning, parmesan cheese, dehydrated onion, cinnamon and sugar (your choice)
Dissolve yeast in 1 cup warm water.
In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, and sugar
Pour in the yeast mixture and remaining 1 cup of warm water. Stir until combined.
Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. (I usually heat my oven up for 2 minutes making sure I can still touch the sides with my bare hand without burning myself, then turn the oven off)
Stir dough down to release the air. Divide dough in half and place each half in a greased 1 quart round casserole or ovenproof bowl. Brush tops with melted butter and add topping of your choice.
Let rise again in a warm place until doubled. (about 45 minutes) Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown. Remove from pans to cool on wire rack. Makes 2 loaves.
These freeze really well in a gallon freezer bag and, drumroll please, cost 46 cents per loaf. If you want the printable recipe go here.