My obsession with low-cost, homemade foods is pretty apparent, but in all reality, I truly believe that making things from scratch tastes WAY better than anything you can buy at the grocery store. Even better than what you get at most speciality stores and many restaurants.
Take for instance Coffee Cake. Coffee cake should NEVER be store bought. It’s always heavy, dense, and bland. You have to eat 3 pieces to feel like you get the sugary, sweet flavor you get with just a bite of coffee cake made from scratch. My recipe comes from my mother – who will probably kill me when she knows I published this.
1 1/2 C Flour 3/4 C sugar 2 1/2 tsp baking pwd
1/4 tsp salt 1/4 C shortening 3/4 C milk
Mix and pour into greased round layer pan. Sprinkle with topping:
1/3 C brown sugar (packed 1/4 C flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon 3 T firm butter
Mix until crumbly and sprinkle on cake. Bake 385 for 30 min.
Another item that I always make from scratch is chocolate sauce. The chocolate sauce at the grocery store is expensive and loaded with preservatives. If you can’t pronounce it, it probably shouldn’t go in your body.
My chocolate sauce is amazing over brownies, ice cream, or (as I do frequently) just eaten with a spoon in the dark.
1 C Sugar
2 Tbsp Cocoa
Mix these together in a small saucepan for about 2 minutes. The longer you heat these two the less sugary your sauce will be. I enjoy the graininess of sugar, so I don’t keep it there long.
2 Tbsp of butter
7/8 C evaporated milk
Add the butter off heat until it melts. Than add the milk and boil. Turn it down once it comes to a boil and add 1 tsp of vanilla. Simmer for about 4 minutes. The longer you simmer the thicker it will be.
Finally, I’m a big believer in homemade bread. I love homemade wheat, but my husband loves White bread. So, to compromise, I switch off. This Amish White Bread recipe is from All Recipes but I’ve been using it for 3 years now and can personally guarantee it’s ease and yumminess.
2 C warm water (110 degrees)
2/3 C white suugar
1 1/2 tbsp active dry yeast
Dissolve the sugar in the warm water in a bowl (I do it in my KitchenAid) and add the yeast. Proof until the yeast becomes nice and foamy.
1 1/2 tsp salt 1/4 C vegetable oil (I use Canola)
6 C flour
I like to add Wheat Gluten to this (since I use all purpose flour and not bread flour) as well as Flax for the Omega 3’s. But I’ve done it with just All Purpose Flour and it’s fine. The Bread flour and gluten just makes it chewier.
Mix until combined with the hook attachment .Then put it in a greased bowl, turning it to coat all sides (so it doesn’t try out). Then cover with a damp cloth. Let it sit for 1 hour until doubled in size.
Then punch down, knead for a few minutes and divide in half. Shape into bread loaves, put into 2 greased bread pans and rise again for 30 minutes.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
This bread cuts into bread slices easily and is incredibly yummy. I’ve also done it where I add cinnamon chips (from Honeyville) to the dough and make Cinnaburst Bread that will put Great Harvest or any bread company to shame!