Wake up to fresh-baked Grandmother Bread! Really. You can. Here’s how…..
(See the full Grandmother Bread recipe and instructions by clicking here.)
I’ve always frozen Grandmother Bread, either as loaves or rolls or as pre-cut slices ready to take out just what I need when I need it. But freezing the dough? That was a new one, and it was time to experiment!
I froze Grandmother Bread dough two ways. In the first method, I made the dough–and before even giving it a first rise, I immediately stuck the ball of dough in a greased bowl, covered lightly, in the freezer. An hour later, the ball of dough neatly frozen, I removed it from the bowl, wrapped it in plastic, and placed the wrapped ball of dough inside a sealed freezer bag. When you freeze an unshaped ball of dough before the first rise, you can use it in numerous ways. You can turn it into a loaf, rolls, caramel buns, apple-streuel ladder loaf, cinnamon crispies, and on and on! (Click here for lots of ideas!) It’s a delight waiting to happen.
In the second version of the experiment, I let the dough rise the first time. I punched it down, shaped it into a loaf, and placed it in a greased loaf pan.
I stuck it, still in the pan, straight into the freezer (covered lightly with plastic). After an hour, I dumped it out of the loaf pan, wrapped it in plastic, and placed it inside a sealed freezer bag.
When I removed the dough the next day from the freezer to actually use, I placed the ball of dough into a greased bowl and placed the shaped loaf into a greased loaf pan. I gave the shaped loaf a second rise and stuck it in the oven to bake. The ball of dough had to take its first rise, then a second rise (which I did as a loaf also as I was in need of sandwich bread at the time).
How long can Grandmother Bread dough be frozen? I don’t know as I only left it in the freezer for a day, but I would suggest that as with most freezer items, several weeks to a couple of months would be optimal max freezer time. It probably could be frozen for longer and still be fine, but you would run the risk of freezer burn (possibly). But, like, you would leave it in the freezer for months? You could resist it for that long???? The main purpose here, of course, is to make some easy great weekend breakfasts, or to get ready for company or holidays, providing great fresh bread without the on-the-spot effort while you’re busy with other things. (If you try out freezing it for six months, let me know how it goes.)
How did the experiment work out? GREAT. Both ways worked perfectly. Why did I do the experiment? Because I’ve had questions about freezing Grandmother Bread dough, similar to the shortcut way frozen bread dough is sold in stores. I’m always up for a baking experiment, so it was fun. And while I’m so in the habit of making bread nearly every day as needed, it opened my eyes to new ways to make Grandmother Bread easier on days when I’m busy. On days when I have time, I can put an extra ball of dough, or extra shaped loaf, in the freezer–to bring out to bake hot and fresh on busier days. And wow, think of the breakfast possibilities! The dough took about six hours to thaw out and rise (both ways, shaped and unshaped)–and even then, I could have let it sit a few hours longer (if I wasn’t so impatient). This means I could take out frozen dough before I go to bed–and wake up to either a ball of dough ready to be shaped into breakfast cinnamon crispies or caramel buns, or a pre-shaped loaf ready to stick in the oven. FRESH HOT Grandmother Bread in the morning without even doing anything!
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Laurie Collins says:
How long did the frozen dough take to thaw? Thanks for doing this-it’s a great idea!
BTW, are you ever going to get a :cowsleep: for your farm?
Just think about all the milk and cheese making opportunities you could have.
On November 25, 2008 at 2:11 am
On November 25, 2008 at 7:02 am
Suzanne McMinn says:
Laurie, the dough took about six hours to thaw out. It’s going to depend on the temperature in your house, though.
I’d love to get an ornamental cow someday! But, I’m not sure yet.
On November 25, 2008 at 7:26 am
Great information. Now if I just had room in my 6 ft. high freezer which is full of UFO’s (Unidentified Frozen Objects) to try out the idea.
On November 25, 2008 at 7:32 am
Sounds like a good idea to me. I love fresh baked bread. I still haven’t tried it yet, but maybe now would be a good time.
On November 25, 2008 at 8:48 am
That is a great idea!
And I have a big freezer that has some room.
I really need to make time to make your Grandmother bread, and experiment with it.
On November 25, 2008 at 8:59 am
Claudia W. says:
I’m getting all prepared to make Grandmothers Bread Dinner Rolls for my contribution to our family Thnaksgiving Dinner.Thank you for the great recipes and tutorials!
On November 25, 2008 at 9:10 am
I’m going to make the Grandmother rolls for Thanksgiving.I’ve never made any bread, rolls, or biscuts from scratch before. I read how to do this on your site a week or so ago. Wish Me Luck!
On November 25, 2008 at 10:51 am
What a great idea Suzanne! Esp. for people like me, that get burned out, on time consuming things…I can do it in steps and enjoy it more. Like today, I will make YOUR piecrust and tomorrow, roll it out and make the pie. I like little steps, because I am not into hard recipes/time consuming…I think you have to LOVE to bake/cook, to not mind.
On November 25, 2008 at 11:02 am
Lord a mercy girl, I am going to have to make this bread aren’t I. You are just twisting my arm! LOL I am going to make some after Thanksgiving, and then will have to make it for Christmas dinner too. Thank you for passing on the reciipes and tips, have a great holiday. Terry
On November 25, 2008 at 11:45 am
Robin G. says:
Okay, I am so wanting that bread right now.
On November 25, 2008 at 11:46 am
Joanna Wilcox says:
when I look at your photo’s, I just salivate :hungry: Thank you for sharing.
On November 25, 2008 at 12:24 pm
You’re a lifesaver. Wasn’t sure how I was going to get bread going for breakfast on ‘Turkey day’. You solved it.
On November 25, 2008 at 12:38 pm
Carolyn A. says:
That sounds mmm, mmm good! I’ll have to try that myself. Thanks for the great tips and recipes. xxoo
On November 25, 2008 at 1:36 pm
Yum! What a great idea! Thanks for sharing!
On November 25, 2008 at 1:42 pm
I used to buy the frozen bread dough, but can’t seem to find it in wheat anymore. *sigh* This seems like a great idea! Thanks for sharing.
On November 25, 2008 at 3:59 pm
On November 25, 2008 at 4:38 pm
BTW—received my Chickens In The Road calendar yesterday!
On November 25, 2008 at 5:37 pm
I’m thinking Ms. Cleo could give Spartacus a run for his money! She doesn’t look like she’d take much crap from him!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
On November 26, 2008 at 10:55 am
I Googled ‘whole grain herb bread’ a couple days ago and ended up here…took one look at that picture of your Grandmother bread and had to stay! If my breads ever turn out looking that good I will be doing the happy dance! :bananadance:
On November 27, 2008 at 9:56 pm
:rockon: You Rock! 🙂 Thanks for sharing how you freeze Grandmother Bread! I made two batches of dough the other day and put one batch in the freezer for Christmas rolls! I was skeptical, but knowing I would not be feeling my best on Christmas, I knew I had to atleast try 🙂 It worked beautifully! Now, I know I can freeze dough for days when I am too busy or not feeling that great to just pull out, thaw, rise and bake 😉 I made tons of rolls for my family of 7-I made cloverleafs and crescent type rolls (can I say mine were better than those in the can ones!). Thanks! We love this recipe, but are more in love with it now! Is that possible? lol!
On December 26, 2008 at 7:59 am
I tried freezing your dough (the loaf pan method) and both of my loaves fell after the second rise. They looked like rectangles, not big beautiful loaves I usually get. Would you have any ideas as to what might have happened? I loved the possibilities with freezing the dough, but after the results I got, I’m scared to try it again. We did have the ultimate breakfast more often than usual and we wound up with some yummy bread crumbs!
On January 12, 2010 at 6:06 am
Suzanne McMinn says:
Kenneth, at what point did you freeze the dough? After the first rise and after shaping them into loaves but before the second rise? Then you took them out to thaw and rise and then they fell? (This is what I’m thinking, so just checking.) How long did you let them thaw and rise? At what point did they fall? It sounds to me as if you may have let them sit out too long on the second rise.
On January 12, 2010 at 6:40 am
Linda Ogden says:
Several times I have tried different bread recipes and I am not sure what I am doing wrong. It seems it doesn’t rise as much as it should but when I bake it, it really smells and tastes like yeast.
On December 31, 2010 at 9:38 am