Today was day two I kept my preschooler home from school. My husband took our two year old to his class so he was happy to play with friends and not be cooped up at home, and picked on all day long. My oldest was actually fine so I had to think of things for us to do all day long here at home. One of those days we did everything – went for a walk, looked at the birds and ducks, played outside with our bunny, watched ellevenity million episodes of inspector gadget and batman, fixed a clock, cleaned the bathroom, did Melissa and Doug stickers, and…baked bread.
You already know how much I love my $10 bread machine because I use it to make pizza dough at least once a week. But since I had a kiddo home and we needed an activity, I thought making bread with our hands and mixer would be fun. Tomorrow I’m planning on fixing chicken paninis for dinner, so we made ciabatta bread – one loaf for tonight’s dinner and one for tomorrow’s.
I was very scientific in my method for choosing a ciabatta recipe; I googled “ciabatta recipe” and clicked on the recipe from All Recipes. I used the instructions at the bottom of the page for the mixer method. The only change I made was to proof the yeast for 5 minutes (sprinkle the yeast over warm water). I didn’t think the dough was extra sticky at all, unlike lots of reviewers. Yeah, I had to heat up the kitchen with the oven but I needed the oven warm for tostadas anyway so it wasn’t a big deal.
MMMMM!! Crunchy outside, soft inside. Divine with chimichurri. Bread baking is a fun, easy activity to do with kids and if they aren’t really into helping, give them some cheap AP flour and let them play with bowls, spoons and random kitchen utensils!