Bread Braids

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Baking bread is one of my favorite things to do. There’s something really satisfying about the process—the kneading, the waiting, the watching, the cozy smell in the house when it finally goes into the oven.

I made this loaf for a New Year’s party this year. It’s a pretty basic egg bread, dressed up for the occasion in fancy, braided form. It turned out much bigger than I intended. (That’s an 18″x26″ baking rack that it’s cooling on.)

When I make bread, unless I’m doing something really specific, I don’t follow a precise recipe. Like a lot of home bakers, I just go by what the dough looks like and how it feels. Too wet? More flour. Too stiff? More liquid and maybe an egg or a little oil, depending on how I’m feeling and where it’ll be served.

Here’s another braided bread. This one is a plain white French-type bread, no eggs.

Not sure why I have baking on the brain in the middle of August, but I find myself really looking forward to the Fall.

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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie works as an advertising copywriter in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.