Monday, January 01, 2007

Is breadbaking frugal?

That was sort of the question asked on a favorite homeschooling discussion board. My answer:

"Frugal types can bake sandwich bread cheaper than buying it. Or you can REALLY beat storebought prices if you make hearty or fancy types!

"I buy flour when it's cheap, yeast in bulk, and make fairly plain bread most of the time for the pleasure of providing good bread to my family. Oatmeal bread or a plain white or part-wheat bread for sandwiches & toast, mainly.

"When I add whole-wheat flour and/or other good ingredients, maybe try a multi-grain bread, or even try something fancy like eggy challah or brioche for Easter, or citrus-scented Portuguese bread, then I am making something I simply won't pay the going price to buy from someone else."

I really did make brioche for Easter one year -- wowza, is that stuff ever a great celebration bread! Last month, before Christmas, I'd been thinking about making stollen, as my mom used to do, but I didn't get into baking mode in time to do that.

I had forgotten about my beloved Portuguese bread recipe. It was from one of those once-a-month cooking cookbooks. I remember that my husband doesn't like the original version, with orange and lemon zest, and that I would make another batch scented with cinnamon for him. Time to put that recipe back into circulation!


Phil said...

Happy New Year from Idaho!

Just wanted to say how much I've enjoyed your posts over the past year. Looking forward to more great blogging in 2007!

Anonymous said...

I make my own bread and it is cheaper. "Bulk" yeast for me is a small one pound bag. Since I wouldn't buy more than two loaves per week at the store anyway I'm only saving a few dollars and since I'm making my bread by hand, not with a bread machine, I'm not sure that economically speaking it's worth all that extra effort.

Anonymous said...

oops...left out the rest of the comment...but when I consider that fresh bread straight from the oven is so good that it can almost be a complete meal compared to cheap store bought sliced bread which tastes like it was made out of sawdust rather than flour it's a bargain.