Ah, another successful homemade bread! I have little to no experience with yeast and bread-making, but thanks to my Joy of Cooking I was able to whip up a nice batch of cheese breadsticks with no problems whatsoever. If you have some time this weekend, give them a try!
Recipe: Cheese Breadsticks (from Joy of Cooking)
Combine in a saucepan and heat until warm (105° to 115°F):
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp vegetable shortening or lard
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp salt
Combine in a large bowl and let stand until yeast is dissolved, about 5 minutes:
- 1/4 cup warm (105° to 115°F) water
- 1 package (2 1/4 tsp) active dry yeast
- 6 to 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Add the lukewarm milk mixture to dissolved yeast. Stir in 3 cups of flour and beat 1 minute, then stir or work in 3 more cups flour. Toss the dough onto a floured board and knead until it is smooth, elastic, and full of bubbles, gradually adding more flour until the dough no longer sticks to your hands. Place the dough in a greased bowl, turn the dough over once, and cover with a cloth. Let rise in a warm place (75° to 85° F) until doubled in bulk, at least 1 hour.
Set the racks in the lower and middle levels of the oven and place a baking pan on the lower rack. Preheat oven to 500°F. Liberally sprinkle 2 baking sheets with:
- All-purpose flour, cornmeal or semolina flour.
Use the palm of your hand to flatten the dough into a 1/2-inch-thick rectangle about 25 x 7 inches. With a knife, cut the dough crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips. Transfer the strips to the baking sheets, leaving about 1/2 inch between them. They will stretch to the width of the pan, 12 inches, as you transfer them. Brush lightly with:
- Water, melted butter or beaten egg.
- Grated cheese
Slide the pans into the oven and immediate pour 2 cups hot or boiling water into the preheated baking pan. Reduce the heat to 400°F and bake until well browned, about 18 minutes. Cool completely on a rack.