Real, honest-to-goodness bread made with yeast. See, I'm not counting the many, many loaves of quick breads I've made over the years. Those aren't really "bread." They're more like coffeecake in slice form, or muffins made in loaf pans.
I can already tell that quick breads may be my first and true love, though. Real bread... is just so messy. Dough stuck to my fingers, my hands, my counter, my wooden spoon. And it's just now rising. I can only imagine the messes that might ensue from an energetic rising.
I'll let you know how the real bread turns out, but for now, let me leave you with my favorite quickbread recipe, from my great-aunt Edie. Just in time for the holiday season and those pretty, alluring bags of fresh, bright, red cranberries, it is... Cranberry Nut Bread!
Cranberry Nut Bread
2 c. flour
1 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. grated orange peel (use the real thing!)
1 egg, beaten
3/4 c. orange juice
1/4 c. oil
1 c. fresh cranberries
1/2 c. chopped nuts (try pecans)
Mix dry ingredients. Add the rest and mix. Bake at 350 for 1 hour.
So simple, so delicious. Make three loaves, one for you, one for your neighbor, and one for your friend.
I can already sense this might mean a scouting trip to the grocery store for me. Do they have fresh cranberries yet? Do they? Kind of like the long wait for canned pumpkin.