Bread Illustrated: A Step-by-Step Guide to Achieving Bakery-Quality Results At Home by America's Test Kitchen Editors

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  • Brown soda bread

    • mark515 on March 31, 2019

      I used buttermilk powder and water, and as far as I can see, it turned out fine. It's a wee bit crumbly at times, but otherwise seems fine. It seemed to me to have a bit of an unwanted scent, maybe the leaveners? I considered buying regular wheat germ and toasting it, since I could get a couple or so pounds for under $3 dollars US. Instead, I purchased (from the cereal aisle) the toasted wheat germ in a jar. It was nearly twice the price for the convenience.

  • Quick cheese bread

    • mark515 on March 31, 2019

      I made this a month or so ago. Good structure. I was underwhelmed by the flavor, which is highly cheese dependent. I'll go for some extra-sharp cheddar that really is extra-sharp next time.

    • debkellie on February 12, 2017

      Simple - easy to make. Thought it would turn out like a brick, but very pleasantly surprised. Great texture & flavour. American daughter-in-law said it was very similar to "Mormon biscuits"....

  • Rustic wheat berry bread

    • eliza on April 29, 2018

      This is a high hydration bread (I calculated 79% hydration), and as such I found it a bit too wet and had to add extra flour. I'd say this is a recipe for bakers with some bread baking experience, since handling wet dough can be tricky. The resulting baked loaf tasted good and had an excellent structure so I may make this one again. Made a half recipe to test it out. Edited to add: second time I made this and I made the full amount. Blending the wheat berries created a gummy mess in my food processor so I’m now not planning to make this one again.

  • Pain de campagne

    • twoyolks on January 10, 2017

      The flavor on the bread was good but was a little heavy on the bitter whole wheat taste. The crumb was tighter and less rustic than I'd expect for pain de campagne but was loose enough to be pleasant. The crust was fine.

  • Kouign-amann

    • twoyolks on January 30, 2020

      These take a while to make but aren't particularly difficult. The flavor is amazing. It's like the best mix between a croissant and palmiers. They're particularly good with vanilla ice cream and salted butter caramel. Surprisingly for America's Test Kitchen, some of the directions were less than clear. Particularly, there's a section when you soften butter with a rolling pin in folded up parchment but it's not clear why the parchment is folded or what it means to put it in the center. Also, there's a call for melted butter but part of it is used on the first day and part on the second day. But this was still very good.

  • Parker House rolls

    • twoyolks on April 02, 2018

      I found the rolls to be a bit bland if rich and the crumb was tighter and denser than I'd like.

  • Thin-crust whole-wheat pizza

    • twoyolks on January 10, 2017

      The crust was a good whole wheat crust. The toppings were a bit bland and greasy. Adding the ricotta after baking made the pizza cold.

  • Almost no-knead bread

    • twoyolks on November 29, 2017

      The bread had some yeasty flavor (from the beer) and some tang (from the vinegar) but it wasn't quite the same as actual sourdough. The bread had some crust but it wasn't quite right. The crumb was a lot tighter than I'd expect from a country loaf. This was, however, quite easy.

  • Rustic dinner rolls

    • twoyolks on April 09, 2018

      These rolls get a nice crust without being too hard. The flavor is good. The crumb was also light enough without being too airy to be a roll. I'd liken these to a nice "ciabatta roll."

  • Southern-style skillet cornbread

    • stef on October 23, 2016

      This recipe used all cornmeal no flour but was moist.Recipe needed more liquid than indicated. I would add a tablespoon more sugar because I like a little more sweetness in my cornbread. Two finely chopped jalapeños were added

  • Pitas

    • stef on April 02, 2018

      This worked great. Nice deep pockets

    • Foodiewife on August 18, 2019

      Very easy to make, and it was a total success. I'd definitely make this one again.

  • Chocolate babka

    • stef on April 15, 2018

      This was had very clear instructions and the babbka turned out nice and moist with the dark chocolate being just the right amount of sweetness

  • Crescent rolls

    • stef on December 21, 2017

      A nice light buttery crescent rool. Successful converted to bread machine

  • English muffins

    • stef on February 28, 2020

      Great English muffin. There is a 12 to 24 hrs wait. You shape the muffin and put a cookie sheet pan on top and refrigerate. I used an all clad pan at first to brown the muffins but the cornmeal started to burn switched to non stick cleaning the pan with paper towel after each set of muffins. They are then baked in the oven for a short time.

    • Tweedles81 on January 13, 2019

      I made this recipe (my first time making English muffins) and it was PERFECTION! My husband went a little overboard with the cornmeal though. I would stick to the amount called for in the recipe - otherwise it ends up being very toothsome. Great flavor and texture. I couldn’t be happier and it makes me very excited to explore this book further!

  • Honey-wheat dinner rolls

    • clawsgirl on November 25, 2016

      These rolls were really awesome. They were fluffy and flavorful, definitely not your generic white dinner roll. I let them rise for close to 16 hours after shaping, and they weren't sour at all, like some long rise breads come out to be. My only problem was with shaping. The instructions say to "form into rough ball by stretching dough around your thumbs and pinching edges together so that top is smooth." These pieces were rectangular in shape, so I didn't understand what they meant by "stretch dough around your thumbs". Lengthwise? Widthwise? This led to my rolls being oddly shaped and not perfectly smooth. Furthermore, the honey flavor was a bit muted. That could've been due to the long rise or simply because my honey doesn't have a very assertive flavor. Either way, will definitely add more honey next time. Oh, and this dough seemed very wet. I don't have a stand mixer, and so kneading by hand was not fun. Regardless, these were delicious rolls and I'd definitely make them again.

  • Whole-wheat American sandwich bread

    • clawsgirl on November 25, 2016

      Note: made by hand sans stand mixer. Dough seemed a little wet, but was just tacky after a little flour was added. Kneaded for about 20 minutes total. I let it go a little too long with the second rise, as it was more like 2 inches above the pan. Also did not have a spray bottle, so I sprayed a plate that was in front of the loaf pan to mist it. The loaf was absolutely delicious, and made great sandwiches. Seriously awesome flavor.

  • No-knead brioche

    • clawsgirl on November 23, 2016

      Made twice already, super good. Amazingly easy. The bread has a sweet tang to it, although not too sweet. The second loaf I made was at the 48 hr mark and was less sweet and more tangy than the one I made at the 16 hr mark.

  • Skillet pizza

    • Foodiewife on August 18, 2019

      Very simple recipe to make. Loved it.

  • Potato dinner rolls

    • bwhip on February 23, 2020

      These were excellent, and easy to make with very detailed instructions. Turned out really fluffy and delicious. Next time I may add a bit more salt, but otherwise I wouldn’t change a thing.

  • Japanese milk bread

    • cellenly on March 26, 2020

      First time making Japanese milk bread or any bread with the tangzhong technique. My paste cooked in 35-seconds in microwave. The butter took longer to incorporate even though softened. The second kneading was hard to tell at what point to stop since it's such a wet dough. I never got "smooth and elastic and clearing sides of bowl but sticking to the bottom"; all I got was sticky high hydration dough. There was one point where it got close, but then I kept on kneading, then I was scared that I overdeveloped the gluten. I never got a smooth ball, but a sticky ball. I literally dumped the sticky ball into bowl and didn't even bother shaping it. I let it rise for 1.5 hrs first rise and 1 hr second rise due to potential overdevelopment of gluten even though it had risen above the pan line. I was not gentle with the rolling out in strips. Yet despite all that, everyone loved it. They asked for it the next day.

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  • ISBN 10 1940352606
  • ISBN 13 9781940352602
  • Published Aug 06 2016
  • Format Paperback
  • Page Count 432
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher America's Test Kitchen

Publishers Text

In this comprehensive cookbook, America's Test Kitchen breaks down the often intimidating art and science of bread baking, making it easy for anyone to create foolproof, bakery-quality breads at home.

Many home cooks find bread baking rewarding but intimidating. In Bread Illustrated, America's Test Kitchen shows bakers of all levels how to make foolproof breads, rolls, flatbreads, and more at home. Each master recipe is presented as a hands-on and reassuring tutorial illustrated with six to 16 full-color step-by-step photos. Organized by level of difficulty to make bread baking less daunting, the book progresses from the simplest recipes for the novice baker to artisan-style loaves, breads that use starters, and more complex project recipes. The recipes cover a wide and exciting range of breads from basics and classics like Easy Sandwich Bread and Fluffy Dinner Rolls to interesting breads from around the world including Lahmacun, Panettone, and Fig and Fennel Bread.

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