Well, I went out on a limb (Figuratively, of course. It would be hard to cook on a limb.) yesterday and made my own fresh bread! I had never done it before, so I was a little wary. I borrowed a recipe from a friend who makes this bread all the time (I once told her she had to make me some monthly. She did not agree to this arrangement. Yeah, I'm looking at you, Marykate.). She adds garlic (making it a perfect complement to a yummy spaghetti dinner) and brushes olive oil on top to add a little extra flavor.
So I followed the recipe, used all supplies provided by my roommate Rachel (to which I owe some flour...and yeast...and salt... okay, you get the idea), and it turned out really well! It really did take about an hour. It may not look so nice, but it tastes delicious -- dense but still fluffy. Unfortunately my loaves did not get quite tall enough to make very good sandwich bread (I may still attempt a very skinny PB&J), but it is nice for snacking with some butter, or as Rachel and I tried last night, with some chocolate almond butter (a less creamy version of Nutella that's maybe a tad healthier for you). YUM.
Pardon the cell phone pics. Some day I will actually provide decent photos of things I care to share.
The crust was a little hard to cut..
Overall, I was so pleased to see some success in the kitchen (via me, not my crazy adventurous cooking roomie), I may just have to try a different recipe!