Two Men, Two Pits and a Blog

How To Impress A Woman: Bread!

Repairing on the couch with lovely beverage in hand, I muse over the weather forecast. The man on the screen says a wintry tempest brews, and a prominent Canadian chill is soon to descend upon us, with no mercy. And the winds will howl, and the temperatures will feel akin to twenty below. Squirrels will fall from trees, and children will openly weep. I crossed my legs like a gentleman of leisure, gazing into the warm glow of the fire-place, whilst listening the weatherman banter, and the cold sleet tap like ball bearings over a frozen window pane. I could almost hear the mercury sink for cover in its fragile, glass tube. Like any opportunist, I knew this was some fine weather to do a little baking. To partake in some quality ambiance. In point of fact, I already had some bread going out on the grill!

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Let it be said, because it’s true, anything you can cook in the house, you can also do on the grill. Take bread for instance. Once thought to be the sole domain and prize of a good oven, we keepers of the pit have been puttering on such matters, and are here to tell you, good bread can be baked right along side your steaks and chicken, if you have a mind to. And why wouldn’t you! Bread is good, and besides that, the lady folk all seem to appreciate it, and take to it with consistent good cheer. Say what you will, but that is no small thing.

First off is the dough. I’ll admit, I’m a man, and I can’t bake bread. I have tried before, the end result resembles something rather like a stale, old shoe. And once upon a time, along with many menfolk I presume, I had given up all together of ever having the sufficiency of skill for baking worthy bread. And I was OK with that. I’ll stick to steaks, and leave the bread to the prettier folk. But then one day, on a visit to my elder brother’s abode, everything changed. I stepped into his house and was greeted by a wondrously pleasant aroma I don’t often associate with my elder brother – that of fresh-baked bread. And he was procuring loaves upon beautiful loaves of it from his faithful oven. A big grin on his face, a tightened belly, and mass quantities of bread lay steaming at the end of a bright sunbeam. Well, he had cracked the code it appeared, and after a sampling, a passing of the knowledge was in order, and of course, I felt compelled then to adapt it for the grill.

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The bread I speak of is from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes A day, an excellent book that swept the nation a few years back. I’m quite sure many of you already know about that, but some of you may not. If you’re in the minority and fancy yourself a bread lover, but inept at making it, then you’re in for a lovely treat. Instead of regurgitating some one else’s brilliance, let me instead link you to the masters themselves. This short video will tell you everything you need to know about making this wonderful bread. Then we will show you how to work it on the grill.

In case you didn’t catch the master recipe, you’re going to want to hang on to this for some future grilling adventures here at the Patrons of the Pit. We have but just begun to show you what is possible, where the bread maker and the grill master meet in stride.

Master Recipe

  • 3 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons granulated yeast (1 1/2 packets)
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons kosher or other coarse salt
  • 6 1/2 cups unsifted, unbleached, all-purpose white flour, measured with the scoop-and-sweep method

*We have found, through extensive experimentation, that 5 1/2 cups of flour makes for a considerably softer bread, and though the dough is trickier to work with, it does at least save some flour. 

Adapting it to the grill is easy too. Every thing about this bread is easy. Now the grill we’re using this cook is your basic Weber kettle type, on the assumption that’s what most people have. If your working the BGE or other ceramic egg types, odds are since you have one of those, you already know how to set it up for baking. If your working a barrel type grill, the concept we will share isn’t too far off. You’re pit master instincts will serve you well. Anyways, while ideally you’ll want your grill at about 450 degrees, it’s not that big of deal if it’s not. Employ your considerable skills to get it close enough. Next, if you like a crunchy crust on your bread, lay it directly on the grate, in-direct of course. For a more easy-going crust, lay the dough on a pizza stone or in a cast iron pan, and again, over in-direct heat. A pan of water in the grill is also supposed to lend to crisper crust, but having done it both ways, neither seem to make much difference, so I usually just go with out. Put on the lid to create an oven-like atmosphere, and proceed to go draw yourself a lovely beverage.  As it bakes, check in on it from time to time, and rotate it 180 degrees at least once for even baking. At 450 degrees, it should take about 30 minutes. This particular loaf took 45 minutes, none the worse for the journey.  You’re looking for an internal temperature of 200 degrees. After some practice, you’ll know exactly when it’s done by its hollow sound, with but a mere strike of the finger upon its golden crust.

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Artisan bread on the grill. It will amaze your family, and astound the women in your life too. Womenfolk like bread you see, don’t ask me why, they just do. They are drawn to it, and irrevocably so.  To its soft center, shielded by a firm crust. To its deposits of guilty carbohydrates inherent within. They just like bread is all. And if they see a man make it, well, you quickly become their hero. And you’ll just have to deal with it, by and by.

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I know, a meatless blog by The Ministers of Meat. It ain’t right. Rest assured tho there was chicken grilled also during this cook, and that this bread makes for amazing, robust,  meat sandwiches if one so chooses. Anyways, gentlemen, if you want to impress your lady, try baking them a loaf of home-made artisan bread. Better yet, go do it on the grill, and you’ll both be happy ever after, I think…

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48 responses

  1. Effing beautiful. I can almost smell it.. and that’s making me hungry…

    February 20, 2013 at 11:22 am

  2. strivingfortiny

    I’m impressed. And may need to take on this challenge myself!
    Great blog post! ❤ 😀

    February 20, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    • Well thank you. It’s really the easiest bread on the planet, pretty much. Tastes really good too.

      February 20, 2013 at 2:09 pm

      • strivingfortiny

        I’m tellin’ ya, there isn’t a soul out there who can’t relate to bread. It’s hard to live without it. Seriously, two things noticed on a dressed table for dinner is meat and bread. We gravitate toward those two things to keep us full. It’s primal. Some primitive tribes have even mixed the two together for long journeys. 😉

        February 20, 2013 at 2:23 pm

      • Astute observation!

        February 20, 2013 at 2:42 pm

      • strivingfortiny

        Thanks! 😀
        Your blog is awesome

        February 20, 2013 at 3:10 pm

  3. grizyeti

    Rackin frackin, this page always makes me so hongry. I loved my brats this past weekend, and now I gotta try some bread, although I’m no baker, I can’t mess up dough too bad.

    Yow, in I go, thanks again!

    February 20, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    • Well that’s the beauty of this dough, the less you touch it, the better it gets. If I can do it, you can do it!

      February 20, 2013 at 4:02 pm

      • grizyeti

        I may let you know how it goes, maybe it’ll be my own blog post about bread?

        February 20, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      • That sounds good!

        February 20, 2013 at 4:10 pm

  4. Awesome read. I’ve only had homemade bread a few times, but this looks mouthwatering.

    February 20, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    • Cool. Well it’s real easy to do. Virtually goof proof bread. You will be the awe of many if you do it.

      February 20, 2013 at 4:16 pm

  5. Nice, Bread on the grill makes me think about grilled pizza or flat breads

    February 20, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    • Ah yes, ain’t too many things that can’t be done on the grill. Pizzas are one of the best.

      February 21, 2013 at 9:03 am

  6. Rico !.. the book is heading to my kindle as I type..thanks

    February 21, 2013 at 7:12 am

    • Wow, very nice. You will have good smells emanating from your abode soon. The authors of that book, I believe are from the Twin Cities area too.

      Blessings!

      February 21, 2013 at 8:40 am

  7. Great work! I’m dying to make my own bread too. Hopefully I have at least half of your success!

    February 21, 2013 at 8:30 am

    • You’ll do great. The beauty of this bread is the less you touch it, the better it is. I have yet to screw up a loaf using their techniques. They have cracked the code to bread making for dummies. I highly recommend their book.

      February 21, 2013 at 8:44 am

      • strivingfortiny

        See, this bread will be perfect to make while I venture/live in my very near future Class B Motorhome Van! Simple and easy to make in a really small kitchen space, then BBQ outdoors in a little, portable, lidded grill along with some kind of deeeelicious meat, mmmm.
        I am soooo doin’ it 😀

        February 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm

      • That’s awesome. Yes, another beautiful thing about the bread, is you keep the bucket of dough in the fridge, ready to go when ever the mood strikes, and I’d reckon, about an hour from the time you think you’d like to have some fresh baked bread, it’s done! It’s a good system you will find, but it tastes even better.

        February 21, 2013 at 2:56 pm

  8. How cool! I gotta try the grilled version. Looks amazing. Thanks for stoppin by!

    February 21, 2013 at 3:22 pm

  9. I’ve had plenty of baking disasters, but I’m definitely going to try this bread- you make it sound so easy! Love the blog 🙂

    February 22, 2013 at 2:54 am

  10. mdprincing

    I tell you what, this is some of the best bread you will ever have brother (Hulk Hogan voice). I have been making bread from a recipe like this for 3-4 years now, called the Master Boule, or basic artisan loaf. I was hooked on Zingerman’s bread (deli in Ann Arbor) and my wife pointed out our CC bill for my latest shipment of bread, she felt $25 a loaf, due to shipping, was a little high and suggested an alternative. Well the grocery bakery wasn’t cutting it so I started to read and search and found this. Awesomeness ensued. We rarely buy bread anymore and have become quite good at making our own super duper garlic bread, sun dried tomato/parmesan, and a killer jalepano/cheddar loaf.

    I would also suggest pizza on the grill, if you need a great dough recipe, let me know, I have tried a bunch and am in love with one that is derived from a Mario Batali resturaunt.

    February 22, 2013 at 10:09 am

    • Very cool bread testimony!

      Yeah, the dough in this post can also be used for pizza as well. I was going to do an article on that in the near future. It can be used for allot of stuff actually. Very versatile. Your bread recipe sounds equally as wondrous. After you bake a few rounds, you don’t even wanna go buy bread again it seems. Thanks for the comment!

      February 22, 2013 at 11:01 am

  11. Thanks for liking my post on maple syrup! You do have a lot of interesting food cooking on your Blog. I’ll be back, and do drop by again, because I blog frequently about food too.
    http://www.opallaontrails.wordpress.com

    February 22, 2013 at 3:13 pm

  12. yes. I am a woman and impressed.

    March 8, 2013 at 1:09 pm

  13. Phenomenal! Love it! And yes… I am impressed!!! Ha ha!! Fabulous blog! And thanks for visiting my world of chocolate! Wink!

    March 11, 2013 at 10:33 am

  14. Pingback: How To Impress A Woman Again: Peach Smoked Caramel Rolls | Patrons of the Pit

  15. I am very impressed.

    March 20, 2013 at 5:07 pm

  16. derbygirleats

    Women love bread because it’s how we like our men… Firm on the outside, soft on the inside 😉 …And our bodies crave comforting carbs when we’re stressed!

    March 29, 2013 at 2:48 pm

  17. Pingback: Good Bye Winter: Artisan Pizza on the Grill | Patrons of the Pit

  18. this post is so great – thanks!

    June 21, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    • strivingfortiny

      This is such a great blog 100% 😀

      June 23, 2013 at 11:15 pm

  19. Nick Trandahl

    You’ve gotten my saliva truly flowing with this one, gents! I can smell it. Great post.

    July 12, 2013 at 6:32 pm

  20. Ha. Womenfolk do like bread. You’ve got us figured (even better if it’s with balsamic and olive oil). Though, my husband has never made me bread so now I’m disappointed.

    July 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm

    • Well now you weren’t supposed to get disappointed! Forward the boy this article perhaps, who knows!

      July 22, 2013 at 7:19 pm

  21. Thanks, this is a life changing post!

    July 31, 2013 at 12:20 pm

  22. Absolutely mouthwatering…..speaking as a member of the fairer folk. Look forward to to posts on bbq in the rain……speaking as an inhabitant of a country that has more than its fair share. Thank you so much for wonderful posts all round.

    August 18, 2015 at 6:04 am

    • Thank you kindly! Well you’re in luck, it’s been raining here the last few days, and our next post coming up will be about bbq in the rain! We don’t let a little water stop us from our appointed grilling!

      Thanks for swinging by!
      Potp

      August 18, 2015 at 9:09 am

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