I adore cooking with my kids, and they love cooking with me too. For Christmas this year we received a cookbook geared just to kids. They could not be more excited! Of course that means the first thing we did was dive right in and make something. We chose “Whole-Wheat Bread In A Bag.” It sounded intriguing, and I loved the idea of allowing the kids to do most of the work. Who doesn’t love fresh bread? It sounded like a win-win situation to me. The recipe was simple (It was actually exactly the same as the recipe I use in my bread maker all the time) but the difference was that you do all the mixing and kneading in a giant zip top bag. Both my three year old and six year old made their own loaves. And both were engaged and interested in the whole process. Like I said, win!
Here are your ingredients: (I have adapted the recipe a touch)
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 cup hot water
1 cup bread flour
2 tablespoons orange zest
This will make just one medium sized loaf. I doubled the recipe so that my kids could each make a loaf themselves.
Place the wheat flour, yeast, and salt into a zip top bag. Seal and shake.
Add the oil, honey, water, and zest. Seal the bag, making sure to squeeze out any extra air.
Now, here is the fun part. Have your kids mix everything together by squishing, and squeezing the bags. When they get everything mixed together add the remaining flour. Seal the bag and keep kneading. Eventually a dough ball will form. Your kids will be excited! They will exclaim it to be magic! Okay, maybe not, but it is still cool. When you finally get the dough ball formed set the timer for about ten minutes. This is the kneading stage, you let the kids go nuts on their bags for ten minutes. Not so long as they get bored, and long enough to actually knead the bread properly. Sweet. My kids were very enthusiastic about this. They were punching it, playing catch with it, you name it. But hey, the bread got what it needed out of that.
Place your bags in a warm place to rise. It took about an hour for it to double in size.
Grab your bread pans, and butter then flour them.
Punch down your dough once it has doubled in size. Pull it out of the bag and put it into your loaf pan. Cover the pan with a clean dish towel and allow it to rise again. Ours went about 30 minutes before it had doubled in size again.
Finally place your bread into a 350 degree oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.
Now this is my favorite part (besides eating the warm fresh bread) throw the bags into the trash. Dishes done!