Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Bakin' Bakin' Bakin'

Confession time: I am a wannabe foodie. I love to eat, and even love poring over shows on the Food Network. (Currently It's Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. Lots of yummy stuff, but it gives me cravings for road trips too...) There are some great foodie blogs out there as well. Ree at The Pioneer Woman posts wonderful tales of her life on the ranch, and the photos of her cooking are usually enough to set me drooling.

My own cooking skills - not so much. To be fair, life is complicated by H working twelve hour days (sometimes six days a week), and a preschooler who is still being intensely picky about what he eats. Our local Family Network recently hosted a one night class on "Dealing With Your Picky Eater." I signed right up for that one, to be sure! Out of lots of good advice, I got more tips for adding "good stuff" to recipes. With bread being very high on Daniel's list of Things I Will Eat, I made the leap to investing in a bread maker. Mmm! Warm toasty bread, made from my own ingredients!

This Sunbeam Breadmaker model 5891 came in at a reasonable price at just under $60. I've baked two loaves so far, a nice crusty white and a banana pecan.

Pros: Easy operating switches. Can make up to a 2lb. loaf. Select a light, medium or dark crust. There's even an ExpressBake option if you need bread quickly (usual cycle with all the kneading and rising is 3 hours).

Cons: The unit is on the large side. We are often pressed for counter space in our condo, so I am trying to find a balance between ease/frequency of use and taking up available counter space.

The class I took had some interesting ideas about adding items such as chia or flaxseed to boost nutrition. Anyone have any yummy bread recipes they would like to share?

On a side note: What would we do without the Internet? I got to spend some time searching the web for a breadmaker that I felt would suit my needs, for a reasonable price. I was recently contacted by AllChildrensFurniture.com about doing a product review. They sell items as varied as kids bedroom furniture, decor and a multitude of playthings. They look like a good spot to do some hunting for that perfect item for your kid. I look forward to letting you know more about them soon!

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