Oatmeal Walnut Bread

Oatmeal Walnut BreadIngredients

2 cups bread flour

1 pkg. instant yeast

1 ½ teaspoon salt

1 cup water

¼ cup molasses

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

½ cup quick-cook oatmeal

1 cup whole wheat flour

¾ cup walnuts, chopped

1 egg

 

Directions

Note:  Directions are for using a mixer with a dough hook, but this bread can be easily be made by hand.

  1. In a large mixer bowl, combine 1 ¼ cups bread flour, yeast, and salt; blend well.
  2. Heat 1 cup water, molasses, vegetable oil, and oatmeal until warm (120-130º).
  3. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture. Using the mixing paddle, blend at a low speed until moistened, then beat 3 minutes at medium speed. Add whole wheat flour and nuts.  Mix to combine.
  4. Change to the dough hook. Add enough remaining bread flour to make a firm dough.  Knead for 3 minutes.
  5. Turn onto a lightly floured board. Work the dough into a ball with a smooth surface.  Place in a lightly oiled bowl and turn to oil the top.  Cover; let rise in a warm place until double (30 minutes-1hour).
  6. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface; punch down to remove air bubbles. Shape into a round loaf.  Place on a greased cookie sheet.  Cover; let rise in a warm place until doubled (approximately 1 hour).
  7. Combine egg and 1 tablespoon of water; brush the top of the loaf. Optional—you may sprinkle with oatmeal.
  8. Bake in a preheated 375º oven for 30-40 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet and place on a cooling rack.

 

Yield:  1 loaf

Recipe source:  Red Star Yeast

Eggs For Your Spring Basket Up, Salad and Orange Juice Down

Lower retail prices for several foods, including salad, orange juice, shredded cheddar, ground chuck, sirloin tip roast, vegetable oil, white bread, ground chuck, deli ham and orange juice, resulted in a slight decrease in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Spring Picnic Marketbasket Survey.

The informal survey shows the total cost of 16 food items that can be used to prepare one or more meals was $53.28, down $.59 or about 1 percent compared to a survey conducted a year ago. Of the 16 items surveyed, ten decreased and six increased in average price.

CS16_054 Spring Marketbasket Graphic_vert“Egg prices are up sharply from first quarter of 2015, a year ago but are down even more sharply from the third quarter of 2015. This shows the effect of the HPAI (High Pathogenic Avian Influenza) event last year,” said John Anderson, AFBF’s deputy chief economist. “Prices soared in the latter half of last year, but are working their way back down as increasing production has started to catch up with demand, which has moderated prices somewhat,” he said.

Prices on the beef items in the marketbasket – ground chuck and sirloin tip roast – are lower compared with the first quarter of 2015, explained Anderson.  Retail beef prices peaked in early 2015 at record high levels.
“Since then, a combination of increasing beef production, weaker exports, and lower competing meat prices have led to modest price declines,” he said.

Dairy product prices also remain relatively low. At $4.29 for a one-pound bag, shredded cheddar cheese price is at the lowest price in this survey since the third quarter of 2012.  The whole milk price rose almost 3 percent from the third quarter of last year, but that third quarter price was the lowest price in the survey since 2010, noted Anderson.  The whole milk price remains well below the 2015 first-quarter price.
“Apple prices are up quite a bit year-over-year. This is a reversal of retail prices that were historically low in 2015,” said Anderson. Last year, the apple market faced a really tough export environment with labor disruptions at west coast ports as well as an increasingly strong dollar.

“Current retail apple prices are still below some pretty recent years, for example 2011 and 2012,” he said.

Items showing retail price decreases from a year ago included:

  • bagged salad, down 11 percent to $2.20 per pound
  • orange juice, down 8 percent to $3.21 per half-gallon
  • shredded cheddar cheese, down 7 percent to $4.29 per pound
  • whole milk, down 6 percent to $3.23 per gallon
  • ground chuck, down 5 percent to $4.36 per pound
  • vegetable oil, down 5 percent to $2.55 for a 32-ounce bottle
  • white bread, down 3 percent to $1.69 per 20-ounce loaf
  • flour, down 1 percent to $2.49 for a 5-pound bag
  • sirloin tip roast, down 1 percent to $5.65 per pound
  • potatoes, down 1 percent to $2.71 for a 5-pound bag

These items showed modest retail price increase compared to a year ago:

  • apples, up 12 percent to $1.64 per pound
  • eggs, up 9 percent to $2.23 per dozen
  • bacon, up 8 percent to $4.78 per pound
  • toasted oat cereal, up 6 percent to $3.31 for a 9-ounce box
  • chicken breast, up 3 percent to $3.37 per pound
  • deli ham, up 1 percent to $5.57 per pound

Price checks of alternative milk and egg choices not included in the overall marketbasket survey average revealed the following: 1/2 gallon regular milk, $2.13; 1/2 gallon organic milk, $4.32; and one dozen “cage-free” eggs, $3.67.

The year-to-year direction of the marketbasket survey tracks closely with the federal government’s Consumer Price Index (http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm) report for food at home. As retail grocery prices have increased gradually over time, the share of the average food dollar that America’s farm and ranch families receive has dropped.

“Through the mid-1970s, farmers received about one-third of consumer retail food expenditures for food eaten at home and away from home, on average. Since then, that figure has decreased steadily and is now about 16 percent, according to the Agriculture Department’s revised Food Dollar Series,” Anderson said.

Using the “food at home and away from home” percentage across-the-board, the farmer’s share of this $53.28 marketbasket would be $8.52.

AFBF, the nation’s largest general farm organization, began conducting informal quarterly marketbasket surveys of retail food price trends in 1989. The series includes a spring picnic survey, summer cookout survey, fall harvest survey and Thanksgiving survey.

According to USDA, Americans spend just under 10 percent of their disposable annual income on food, the lowest average of any country in the world. A total of 87 shoppers in 28 states participated in the latest survey, conducted in March.

Dairy and Bacon Prices Down, Apples Too

Lower retail prices for several foods, including whole milk, cheddar cheese, bacon and apples resulted in a slight decrease in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Fall Harvest Marketbasket Survey.

The informal survey shows the total cost of 16 food items that can be used to prepare one or more meals was $54.14, down $.12 or less than 1 percent compared to a survey conducted a year ago. Of the 16 items surveyed, 10 decreased and six increased in average price.

Higher milk and pork production this year has contributed to the decrease in prices on some key foods.

“Energy prices, which affect everything in the marketbasket, have been quite a bit lower compared to a year ago. Processing, packaging, transportation and retail operations are all fairly energy-intensive,” said John Anderson, AFBF’s deputy chief economist. Lower energy prices account for much of the modest decrease in the marketbasket.

CS15_128 Fall Harvest Marketbasket SurveyThe following items showed retail price decreases from a year ago:

  • whole milk, down 17 percent to $3.14 per gallon
  • bacon, down 11 percent to $4.55 per pound
  • apples, down 7 percent $1.45 per pound
  • shredded cheddar, down 5 percent to $4.56 per pound
  • flour, down 4 percent to $2.37 per five-pound bag
  • bagged salad, down 4 percent to $2.46 per pound
  • vegetable oil, down 3 percent to $2.61 for a 32-ounce bottle
  • Russet potatoes, down 3 percent to $2.64 for a five-pound bag
  • white bread, down 1 percent to $1.69 for a 20-ounce loaf
  • chicken breast, down 1 percent to $3.42 per pound

These items showed modest retail price increases compared to a year ago:

  • eggs, up 56 percent to $3.04 per dozen
  • orange juice, up 7 percent to $3.43 per half-gallon
  • ground chuck, up 6 percent to $4.55 per pound
  • toasted oat cereal, up 3 percent to $3.09 for a nine-ounce box
  • sirloin tip roast, up 3 percent to $5.67 per pound
  • sliced deli ham, up 1 percent to $5.47 per pound

“As expected we saw higher egg prices because we lost so much production earlier this year due to the avian influenza situation in Iowa, Minnesota and some other Midwestern states,” Anderson said.

Price checks of alternative milk and egg choices not included in the overall marketbasket survey average revealed the following: 1/2 gallon regular milk, $2.21; 1/2 gallon organic milk, $4.79; and one dozen “cage-free” eggs, $4.16.

The year-to-year direction of the marketbasket survey tracks closely with the federal government’s Consumer Price Index report for food at home. As retail grocery prices have increased gradually over time, the share of the average food dollar that America’s farm and ranch families receive has dropped.

 

“Through the mid-1970s, farmers received about one-third of consumer retail food expenditures for food eaten at home and away from home, on average. Since then, that figure has decreased steadily and is now about 16 percent, according to the Agriculture Department’s revised Food Dollar Series,” Anderson said.

Using the “food at home and away from home” percentage across-the-board, the farmer’s share of this $54.14 marketbasket would be $8.66.

AFBF, the nation’s largest general farm organization, began conducting informal quarterly marketbasket surveys of retail food price trends in 1989. The series includes a Spring Picnic survey, Summer Cookout survey, Fall Harvest survey and Thanksgiving survey.

According to USDA, Americans spend just under 10 percent of their disposable annual income on food, the lowest average of any country in the world. A total of 69 shoppers in 24 states participated in the latest survey, conducted in September.

Simple Yeast Bread

breadIngredients

1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast

2-1/4 cups warm water (110° to 115°)

3 tablespoons sugar

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.

2. Add the sugar, salt, oil and 3 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

3. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes.

4. 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.

5. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough in half. Shape each into a loaf. Place in two greased 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pans. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30-45 minutes.

6. 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. Glaze top with butter.

Yield: 2 loaves

Sweet Potato Mini Loaves with Orange Cinnamon Honey Butter

sweet potato mini loavesMini Loaves Ingredients
1 cup warm water
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 envelope)
1/4 cup + 1 teaspoon sugar
2/3 cup mashed sweet potato
1 egg
1/4 cup melted butter, cooled
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
3 1/2 -4 cups bread flour

Butter Ingredients
6 tablespoons butter, softened
4 tablespoons honey
Zest from 1/2 orange
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Directions
1. Pour warm water into the bowl of a stand mixer. Sprinkle yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar over water. Stir to combine and proof the yeast 5 minutes.
2. Stir in remaining sugar, mashed sweet potato, egg and melted butter.
3. With mixer on low, slowly incorporate the salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and flour in 1/2 cup increments, switching to 1/4 cup increments as the dough starts to form.
4. Once the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl and is tacky but will not stick to your hands when pressed, turn the mixer on knead speed and knead for 6 minutes.
5. Remove dough from the bowl, grease the bowl, turn the dough around in the bowl to lightly grease it. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 hour in a draft-free warm place in your kitchen.
6. Remove the plastic wrap, punch down the dough and divide it into 8 equal pieces. Roll into logs and place in greased mini loaf pans. Lightly cover loaves with plastic wrap or a clean towel and let rise another hour.
7. Preheat oven to 350º F. Bake loaves for 20 minutes or until tops are lightly golden.
8. Remove from pans.
9. Brush loaves with butter (optional). To make the butter, combine all ingredients until smooth.

Yield: 8 mini loaves

Sweet Potato Mini Loaves with Orange Cinnamon Honey Butter recipe from laurenslatest.com and photo by Lois Linke. 

Macaroni Grill’s Rosemary Olive Oil Bread

Ingredients
1 cup warm water (100-110º F)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped (or 2 teaspoons dried)
1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning (or a pinch of each ground garlic, dried oregano and dried basil)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup bread flour + extra for kneading (NOTE: I could not find white whole wheat flour so used 1 cup whole wheat and 1 1/2 cups bread flour.)
1 egg, whisked + 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
Dried rosemary, for sprinkling on before baking

Directions
1. In a large bowl, combine the warm water, sugar and yeast. Let sit 10 minutes to proof.
2. Stir in the salt, rosemary, seasonings, olive oil and whole wheat flour. Add the bread flour and stir until the dough forms a ball.
3. Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 5 minutes, adding more flour as necessary to prevent sticking, until smooth. If using a mixer with a dough hook, the kneading time can be reduced.
4. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl; cover; let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
5. Punch down the dough and form it into a round loaf.  Place it on a cornmeal dusted pizza peel or parchment paper; cover; and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
6. Meanwhile, preheat oven (and pizza stone) to 400º F. Once the dough has risen, gently brush the top with egg wash and sprinkle with dried rosemary.
7. Transfer the dough to the pizza stone in the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes until top is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped.

Yield: 1 round loaf

Macaroni Grill’s Rosemary Olive Oil Bread recipe from ahintofhoney.com and photo by Lois Linke.