Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Homemade Bread, Cake, and Cookies

At long last, I decided to use our oven for the first time yesterday and try my hands at baking. (I have always loved to cook, but I've never expressed any interest in baking.) Needless to say, I got hooked instantly - spent the whole afternoon in the kitchen making homemade bread, banana cake, and chocolate chip cookies.

This recipe for the homemade bread is quite easy to follow. However, I waited almost 4 hours for the second rise (versus the suggested 1 hour) - it might be the amount of yeast, or my lack of kneading expertise, or something else, I should find out soon. Yes it took a lot of time... a lot of idle time actually, but after seeing the finished product, I almost jumped with joy - it looked, felt, and tasted like real bread! Hahaha...

The banana cake is the easiest to make. At first I was only convinced to do this when I saw 4 bananas sitting on the table. (I bought them for Baby to eat but obviously she couldn't finish everything before they expire, so I had to find good use for the leftovers.) It's just a little smashing here and mixing there, then putting everything in the oven to bake. Yummy. Click here for the recipe.

And while the 4-hour waiting time still wasn't up, I quickly searched for chocolate chip cookie recipes that I can instantly make. There are several recipes out there and they are almost the same but I picked this as my guide. (I improvised and used chopped Hershey's kisses as my chocolate chips, because I had to make do with what's in my fridge.) It turned out great! My favorite among the 3! (If you want to know the amount of butter used for this kind of cookie, oh my it's 1 whole block!)

Not bad for a first-timer! I'm so proud that I distributed some to family and my dear mother asked if I'm planning to sell them. Well if you think about it, it's very profitable; you can easily make more than 100% in markup, but I don't think baking homemade goodies can earn me a decent living. The margins are little, except of course if you commercialize. But then again, if it's commercial, it loses its appeal because then it's not homemade anymore.

I enjoy baking because I love experimenting in the kitchen and feeding people along the way. I'm planning to try making other stuff like brownies and chocolate cake as soon as we finish all of this food! I thank our new gas lighter, which triggered my mood for baking and opened the door to a new discovery about myself. :)