So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Galatians 6:9

Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished! Luke 1:45

Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday's Menu

Today will end my bread fun (well at least the recipes one right after another kind of fun) on Monday's Menu for a while. I'm sure you're ready to see something else too. If you'd like to see some others though, you can check them out here, here, and here.

This isn't a filled bread today but it is a fun one to make. Especially now that school is firmly back in session. I don't make it very often anymore now that my children are a little older. But when I explained my little bread series to my family, this was the first recipe requested by the Chick. You know the 14 1/2 year old.

She's definitely a bread-lover, just like her mama.

We call it Rainbow Bread. I've heard of others making Rainbow Bread by mixing in sprinkles but that's not the way I do it. You do want to let your child know that its supposed to be colored. The first time I sent it in the lunch box, a child asked if the bread was molded. Didn't you know that all bread molds in a swirl? My daughter explained that it was Rainbow Bread and then sacrificed one of the pieces of bread to the sampling of the other children leaving her with an open-faced sandwich for the most part.

The first time I came up with this idea I was watching a talk show (Rosie O'Donnell, I think -- don't judge me, I think I just happened to click it on since that's the only time I can EVER remember watching any of it) and she was in Disney World for the week. She said she had ordered a sandwich for her son from room service and it apparently came on bread slices that had multiple colors in it.

So I took my basic recipe the next time and tried adding some color to it. Ta Da. Rainbow Bread.

Here's how....

Make a basic recipe of bread dough. Before shaping it into a loaf, place it on a floured board.

Now divide it into three fairly equal pieces.

Decide on the colors you want to use. I usually use blue and either red or green. I didn't have any red today and didn't really want green so ours is blue and purple. Yeah, I know. But it worked, trust me.

Now you plop a little color down on one of those balls of dough.

And you knead and you knead and you knead and you knead.

If you have some latex gloves, you might want to use them, especially if you use decorator's colors like I do. That will save having to explain why you have blue or green hands. Once you get done, do the next color on another ball of dough. I don't usually mess with the third one. I figure it can be white/yellow. But you can make it another color if your hands have any strength left.

The only other way I can think of to add the color is to make three batches of dough (which is six loaves) and add the color to the liquid in the recipe. I have never tried that but if it's popular enough with your family, feel free and let me know if that's easier.

Anyway, eventually, you'll have two colored balls of dough and one non-colored ball of dough. Or three colored balls of dough. Whatever.

The hard part's done. Now you just layer them. This picture actually looks kind of gross but the one non-colored dough tends to rise while you're kneading the other. I layered the colors this time around the plain dough.

Then you roll it up tightly and make your loaves.

Now, if you really want to have some fun with it, try making it in a different shaped pan. Like an old clean coffee can.
This is just after it finished rising the second time. Bake it up and slice it up.

Yum yum. Rainbow bread. The further in to the loaf I get, the more pronounced and bright the colors, of course.

Now quick, before they know you have it, eat up the swirly top for yourself. You did a lot of work. You deserve the yummy top.

And some butter.

And some honey with the butter.

Oh yeah.

Rainbow Bread

1 1/2 teaspoons yeast
3 Tablespoons sugar
3 to 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup milk, warmed
1/2 cup warm water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
4 Tablespoons butter or margarine, cut into pieces
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Food coloring

Mix together water, yeast, milk, and butter. Set aside. Mix together sugar, about 2 1/2 cups flour, and salt. Add yeast water and lemon juice. Mix well, adding enough of remaining flour to form a soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface. Place in warm greased bowl and allow dough to rise in a warm place for about 2 hours or until double in bulk. Punch down dough and turn out onto floured surface. Divide dough into three equal pieces. Add food coloring to one dough ball and knead until dispersed. Repeat with second and third dough balls if desired. Shape into a rectangle and layer the three doughs on each other. Beginning at short end, roll tightly. Cut in half and place each piece in a greased loaf pan. Allow dough to rise in warm place for about 1 hour or until double in bulk. Bake in 350 degree oven until done -- about 15 - 30 minutes.

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