Thursday, February 5, 2015

Communion Bread: This Do in Remembrance of Me

Our church serves homemade loaves of bread for communion.  Since our church has just passed the 12 year anniversary of its existence, I guess we can't say it's an "age old tradition", but nevertheless, in those 12 years, serving these loaves, made by our members, has become a well-loved tradition.
As one of the bread bakers, it crossed my mind that when new bakers join the team, it might be helpful to have some photos and instructions to go along with the recipe they receive.  My friend, Carol, was visiting last week and took some pictures while I was making the bread for church, so I'm writing this post to help those new to our group!  Thanks and hope this helps you!  What a blessing to participate in this "bread baking ministry"!

Communion Bread (10 loaves)
4.25 cups all-purpose flour
1.25 tsp. salt
2.5 tsp. sugar
2/3 cup olive oil
1.25 cup water
Preheat the oven to 375F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt.  

Mix the dry ingredients well.  Combine the olive oil and water in a cup.  Mix well with a fork and add to the dry ingredients with the mixer on low speed.

Mix the dough at low speed until it comes together to form a rather ragged dough that comes away from the sides of the bowl.  You might need to add a tiny bit more flour or water, depending on the humidity of the day.

Now break off 10 pieces of dough, roll them into balls, and place them on the cookie sheets.  You might need to add or subtract to the dough balls to even them out in size.  Just approximate.

Use your fingertips to smush (yes, that's a very technical term reserved only for church bread bakers :) ) the dough down and out into round circles about 5 to 6-inches in diameter.  
Bake the loaves on two racks in the oven for 18 minutes.  Then switch them top to bottom and bake 5 minutes more.  The loaves should be golden-ish.  They won't be brown all over.  Sometimes a bubble forms, but that's okay!

Remove the loaves to a rack to cool completely.  Take to church and be thankful always!