Home-baked bread would have to be one of the most delicious things you can create at home, no matter which bread you buy as your regular home supply it just never compares to when you freshly make it yourself. There are many different types of bread that are very easy to put together, making your own bread is not as complicated as you may think, and once you get used to the basic recipe you will find yourself adding all sorts of flavorings and new spins on the ingredients to add that personal touch.
The flour that you use within your bread will have a direct effect on the overall product and the flavor and texture of your bread, it is important that you look at buying quality flour if you want to vary the bread you make. For a basic white loaf, it would be ideal for you to choose a strong white bread flour as these tend to have more gluten content which gives your dough the desired elastic texture. A healthier alternative to the traditional flours would be to use wholewheat flour to create a more grainy wholemeal loaf.
As mentioned previously when you become more experienced with baking your own bread at home you may start to think about how you can alter the recipe that you use, one way to do this would be to add extra flavorings and seasonings to create a whole new product. If you want to add some depth to the bread why not try adding your favorite herbs and spices, seeds, and grains. If you want a smokier flavor you should toast the seeds beforehand which will also add a slight crunch and texture.
Toppings and Fillings
Home-baked bread is perfect as a starter or appetizer and when you fill it with tasty treats such as your favorite cheese or sauces when baked together the flavors of whatever you added seeps through the bread adding moisture to the loaf. You could serve this with dipping sauces on the side so that you and your guests can start dipping pieces of your bread into the sauce as a nice starter to introduce your guests with minimal effort or time spent in the kitchen. If you are a fan of garlic bread then you could apply this method when using garlic butter to be used as a side for all of your Italian classics.
Researching New Recipes
If you are interested in expanding your repertoire of bread recipes and flavor combinations then you should definitely invest in some of the great baking cookbooks that are currently on the market. If you are not a fan of the physical copies or recipes the internet is also home to a wide range of blogs and food websites where you can find the latest trends in baking bread and how to serve your own homemade loaves.
Bread In My Kitchen is a great example of resources for bread lovers as it details every aspect of home baking as well as the new equipment that is being released, bread baking these days tends to revolve around the automated bread making machines where you simply make the dough and leave it for a few hours to prove and then cook. Do not worry however, if you prefer to make your bread by hand there is also a large section about how to do this properly including how you should be kneading your dough to reach the perfect consistency and which ingredients are the best to use around the world.