Saturday, August 10, 2013

Rainbow Bread!!!

Megan here, and we have been so excited to try our hand at making Rainbow Bread. 
Our bread recipe is very simple and if you have an electric mixer with a bread hook it's super easy!
For the bread you will need:
3/4 c warm water 
1 package active yeast
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp butter 
1/2 c milk
3 c all-purpose flour
(and a bit more for surface kneading)
and of course gel food coloring 
(purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red)

 You start out by mixing warm water with your yeast.

Once your yeast had dissolved you will add the butter (melted), salt, sugar, and milk.
next add 2 cups of flour and attach to your mixer using the bread hook attachment.

**If you don't have an electric mixer add one cup of flour and mix with your whisk. When you add the second cup you can no longer use the whisk so you can either use your hands (with butter or flour on them) or a wooden spoon. Slowing add in the 3rd cup kneading it into the dough** 

When adding in the 3rd cup of flour do it slowly so it will be better incorporated into the dough.

I know not very sanitary... but hey it's my house, my cat, and nobody had a problem with it. 
Plus if I didn't just let him stay on my shoulder he would have been climbing up my back all night, we wouldn't have gotten anything done! 
In fact as I am doing this post he is just lounging on my shoulder. :/

You may not need the entire 3rd cup of flour, then again you may need more. It all depends on your area and the humidity outside. Being Florida girls baking in the rainy season we needed a lot more flour. You will know the dough is done when it no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl. **or counter if you are kneading by hand**

Next you will take the dough out of the bowl and knead by hand into a ball shape and flatten it out.

Cut the dough into thirds and then cut the thirds in half. This will give you 6 dough balls!

The next part is the most fun (and messiest)! Adding in the food coloring was actually harder than I thought it would be. Also be warned! This can stain your counter-top!
When kneading the food coloring into the dough you make a little hole in the middle and add about a teaspoon of the food coloring in. Fold in it and on a floured surface start to knead it until the color is fully incorporated. To prevent the colors from mixing make sure to clean your area after each ball is done.

 There we are kneading away!

And here is the mess we left behind!

After all the dough is colored you will need to put each ball into it's own buttered bowl (flip the dough so it is greased all over), with a moist towel over it, and left in a warm place to rise for 1 hour. 

Now that an hour each ball of dough should have doubled in size. Punch it down and knead it again (use more flour if you need to).

Next you will get out your loaf pan, you need to make sure to flatten out the dough into the shape of the pan you will be baking it in. 

To minimize the bubbles in the bread wipe a bit of water onto each layer as you go so it sticks together better.

Butter your pan and carefully put the dough in.
Preheat your oven to 375

Cover with a moist cloth and let rise again for about 30 mins.
Put in the oven and bake for 45 mins!

After bake time it up take it out of the oven! You know the bread is done when you can tap the top and it sounds hollow. Butter the top of the loaf so it softens the hard crust.

Looks yummy doesn't it?

We gave it about 15 minutes to cool down 
(normally you should wait 30 mins but we couldn't contain ourselves!)
Slice it up!

*Helpful tip: slice the bread upside down. It's softer on the bottom so you won't smush it*

There you have it! Beautiful rainbow bread! Now you can turn your boring white bread into a Fabulous Rainbow!

And also have PB&J sandwiches! 

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