I know I’m not the only person on Earth right now whose brain has spiraled down this rabbit hole:
“Well, that’s it. This is the end of civilization as we know it. Better learn some useful skills. I better do a refresher course on how to bake bread.”
I know I’m not the only one because after I had this mental breakdown I went to the store and all the yeast was sold out. I had to order a huge amount on Amazon because that was all that was available. (“Better look up the directions on how to harvest wild yeast and maintain a culture.” Check.)
Back in the day I had a copy of Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a day. I made bread for a while. I can’t find my book now though. So I grabbed a couple of ebooks in the series from the library. I also ordered a hardcover copy of Healthy Bread in 5 minutes a day. (“Your ebooks are going to be inaccessible after the apocalype.” Thanks, panic brain. “It is a very large and heavy book. Perfect for smacking zombies upside the head if it comes to that.”)
If you aren’t familiar with these books, the idea is that you make a dough that can stay in the refrigerator for a while. (“Like you are going to have a refrigerator.” Shut up, brain!) When you want to bake a loaf you use a portion of your stored dough, mix in any flavorings you might want, shape as desired, and bake. Five minutes is a bit of a stretch because there is rising time that needs to be taken into account but it is a simple, no-knead system.
These are the books that I read. They all have the same beginning steps for the basic doughs. I didn’t have any whole wheat flour at home so I used the basic white bread recipe from The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day to start.
I mixed up a batch and let it set to start to rise. I always get excited when that actually works. I have bad luck with yeast. Eventually it rose enough to fill the bowl.
Look! It turned into bread.