So, I lived in San Fran when I was a little girl. My parents always would take us to this little diner/café for breakfast by the beach. I can barely remember it. But I remember the feel of the ocean in the morning air. And sitting at the counter and always getting English muffins with cinnamon sugar. Always.
San Francisco is a toast town. Who knew? I certainly didn't before moving to the area. But I got a quick introduction to all things toast. One of the first weekends here I went to Trouble, upon the recommendation of someone I had met the week before. On a slow lazy Sunday, I drove toward the Outer Sunset, with no real idea of where I was going. I just drove and that is when it hit me. Feeling the soft wet air carried up from the ocean. Being roughly in the same neighborhood we would head as little girls. Eating cinnamon sugar toast. It wasn't that Trouble blew my mind but more for the sweetness and simplicity of it. And the beach. The slow vibes. And better having listened to the background story of the history of toast + San Fran and Trouble's role in it (from Act Three of This American Life). It was a great way to appreciate the city and get depth and a different perspective hearing its story and history.
So, here I am, seven months later addicted to experimenting with bread. It is my go to these days. Maybe because it seems perfectly acceptable to eat toast here. And on a daily basis. My latest and probably favorite started with adapting Beth Kirby's Buttermilk and Honey Bread Recipe. I kept adding and taking away until it felt just right.
The beauty of this recipe is it is using a by product. Using every last bit. I use coconut pulp* left over from making coconut milk. However, if you don't want to make coconut milk first, just use unsweetened shredded coconut. The coconut pulp will be a bit more fine and lighter in flavor though.
- 1/4 c warm water
- 2 1/4 tsp yeast (or one package)
- 1 tsp honey
- 3 Tbs unsalted butter
- 1/2 c whole milk yogurt (I never use greek yogurt while baking...just regular whole milk plain yogurt)
- 1/2 c buttermilk (again, the higher the fat content the better)
- 1/3 c maple syrup
- 1 c coconut pulp*
- 3 1/2 c all-purpose flour (start with 2 1/2 c and add the last cup as needed)
- 1 t salt
Begin by combining the warm water, yeast, and honey in a cup and let proof. Around 10 minutes. You can tell when it is ready. It will have filled the cup and will appear light and fluffy. While the yeast is proofing, begin to melt the butter gently on low. Once melted, add the yogurt and buttermilk and mix to combine and let warm. Once warm, remove from the stove top and add the maple syrup and then the yeast mixture. Combine the flour, coconut pulp, and salt in a large bowl and mix together. Then pour in the wet ingredients and combine. Begin to knead the bread in the bowl until all the flour is incorporated in and the dough is no longer sticky, but still soft. Gently turn on to a floured surface and continue to knead until the dough bounces back when poked.
Put the dough back into the bowl and cover the bowl with a moist towel. Set in draft free place for two hours to let rise.
Once the bread has risen to at least double in its size. Remove from bowl and knead and shape into a loaf. Put into a bread pan and again cover with the moist towel. Allow to rise in the pan for an hour while the oven preheats at 375. After the second rise, bake for 30-40 minutes. Until bread is golden and has a hollow sound when you knock on it.
Allow to cool in pan. Enjoy!
(Best served toasted with some homemade almond butter, sliced bananas, coconut shavings, cinnamon, fennel seed, bee pollen, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, and whatever else you deem to add to your toast.)