I’ve been doing a lot of sourdough baking lately, but every once in a while, I want to make something simple that doesn’t require expanding my collection of bubbling cultures in the laboratory that I call my kitchen. So, I turned to a wonderful book, Beth Hensperger’s The Bread Bible: 300 Favorite Recipes. It may not be the most comprehensive book out there, and it list amounts by volume alone (in cups, not metric or baker’s percentages), but by gum, just about everything I make out of this book works.
There was some buttermilk in the refrigerator, left over from apple cheddar scones that I made for Tuesdays with Dorie. I wanted to use it up (I had already frozen it once, and did not want to refreeze it), so I decided to make a buttermilk honey loaf (pp. 54-5 in the book).
It was easy to make, and turned out to be a great toasting bread. I eliminated the glaze (I go through enough eggs as it is). Spread with a bit of butter or Smart Balance, and a wee bit of homemade marmalade, it’s tangy and sweet, and is comforting with a cup of tea.
A couple of baking notes: (1) Grease your baking pans thoroughly – I missed spots in one baking pan, and the loaf stuck; (2) If you want darker loaves than mine, bake the bread in a metal pan (I used Pyrex for these), and (3) the tang of the buttermilk really comes through, so if you don’t like that, you might want to increase the honey a bit.