Thursday, January 17, 2008

Freshly Baked Portuguese Corn Bread

I love to bake bread. But I have to be in the mood for it. And once I'm in the mood for it - I might continue on a bread baking "frenzy" for a time.

Our latest bread was Portuguese Corn Bread (PCB) - a.k.a. Broa De Milo. We love cornbread. Cornbread from a mix - nice and sweet. Homemade cornbread - tasty but less sweet. Blueberry cornbread - a cool combination. Pretty much any cornbread is wonderful...especially served with chili or homemade soup.

I thought the PCB was interesting, since it was combining a yeast bread with a typically non-yeast bread. I just so happened to have cornmeal on hand, so I began the bread baking.

No matter how many times I realize it AFTER the fact, and thus should know better the many "next times"...this was a case where I began the recipe and realized too late that I did not have quite the amount of an integral ingredient, as was called for. But I figured I could make do.

I love my book, "The World Encyclopedia of Bread and Bread Making" because of all the coloful pictures of the different breads and because it also includes some historical information on breads of the world.

When I have read reviews on this book -they were not all very favorable - and some talked of recipe inaccuracies - which I can attest to. So when I use a recipe from this book I pretty much expect that I will need more flour or more water - or both. But other than that - I have enjoyed making some of the breads in this recipe book.

This bread has some extra rising time - so I'm glad I started in earlier in the day. Instead of making one large round loaf - I made two smaller ones. I did not have enough cornmeal (due to another round of frog legs) - so I used extra flour. Also the loaf was to be sprinkled before baking, with polenta - and I planned on using cornmeal for that too, since I did not have any polenta (which appears to be similar to cornmeal) I ended up sprinkling flour on the tops.

The PCB turned out wonderful! Warm, with a thin layer of butter spread on top - delicious! Both kids thought it was great...ds said, "This bread with that juice would make a good summer Sunday meal." I'm not quite sure where that all came from - we do tend to eat lightly Sunday night - so perhaps that was what he was thinking. Today when he was talking about his soup he said "It has a HINT of something like Bandana's (BBQ place)." It was the smoky flavor. Well maybe he's on his way to becoming a food critique.

The PCB did not have an overly strong taste of cornmeal - which was fine with me, though I'd like to try it again using the right amount of cornmeal. It is pretty "dry" like cornbread can be - but it doesn't crumble and fall apart like cornbread. It holds together real nicely when spreading jam on top. Since it doesn't have much fat in it - it's pretty healthy (which I like!), but dries out quickly.


fullheartandhands mama said...

That looks delicious. It makes me hungry. I guess it is time for breakfast!

MondaythroughSunday said...

I love making bread~ Nothing like bread baking in the house! YUM! This looks wonderful!