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Author Topic: Hypertension
BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted July 19, 2007 13:55      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, it must have been either the food or work or both, but it seems that I have developed high blood pressure. I've been put on Avapro for 30 days. Being the nervous ninny that I am at times, i can't help but to wonder what side effects I might have. I've been on the stuff only 2 days and have already spoken to a nurse at the clinic about how I've been feeling.

Anyone else out there with high blood pressure and your experiences in dealing with it?

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garlicguy

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Icon 1 posted July 19, 2007 19:27      Profile for garlicguy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
BBK:

All that pharmaceutical stuff has side effects. Some such common to BP medication are dizziness, nausea, feeling faint or light-headed, and irritability. (Neat, eh?)

After your blood panels are run, if it turns out your lipids are out of whack, there is an over the counter supplement that has helped many. It is called, Red Yeast Rice. Inexpensive and effective.

If you do an internet search, you'll find plenty of info on RYR of both negative and positive variety so choose carefully and be forewarned.

Sorry for your trouble.

gg

PS - I've found that switching to a dark, unfiltered beer helps as well. [Big Grin]

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Mac D
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Icon 1 posted July 19, 2007 19:51      Profile for Mac D     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by garlicguy:

PS - I've found that switching to a dark, unfiltered beer helps as well. [Big Grin]

But I like pilsners. Yes I know, I'm a typical American and drink the watered down version of beer. But I have tried Lagers before, it's just that I like the pilsners better.

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted July 22, 2007 03:27      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
BooBooKitty ____________________ I am not going to welcome you to this club, even if it is a special group. I have been on Lopressor(a beta blocker) for twelve years, I hate it.

Do not get up suddenly, you can run short distances, but will become winded quickly. The drugs I am on are an exertion limiter, I can do alot of physical work just not fast. Try cocoa, green tea and lots of cranberry juice, change waistline (smaller mine is too big if I lost 50-60lbs things would be better).

I do not know if it will effect a womans libdo it does effect mens, hence little blue pills.

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BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted July 22, 2007 04:24      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I guess it's not the club I really want to be part of.

The weird thing is that I'm not terribly overweight but I could stand to lose another 10-15 pounds. I don't smoke. However, in talking with a friend at work he has made some observations.

In the past year, I have gone through stress of various sources. First there was the ex who left. Then there were my own self-doubts and insecurities about my job. And, of course, the pressure I put on myself subconsciously about finding another BF.

Diet-wise, it's not too bad, but I guess it could be better. I've noticed that I had been eating more junk. I am trying to correct this. Also, my intake of beer had increased, so I might have to make a few adjustments there.

I just hope I don't need to go beyond the 30 days of pills prescribed to me. [Razz]

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted July 22, 2007 05:33      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Significantly cutting your salt intake can sometimes be enough to reverse hypertension. Definitely lowering stress or learning to deal with stress in a healthy matter, exercising more, and eating plenty of healthy foods like fruits and vegetables (don't forget fiber!) makes a significant difference, too.

The good news is that there's a variety of blood pressure medications, so if you don't like the effects one has on you, ask your doctor to suggest another one. Also, depending on your body weight, you may be able to take a lower dose, which may make the side effects less noticeable.

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Nitrozac

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 08:46      Profile for Nitrozac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Sorry to hear about that Boo Boo! High blood pressure is one of those things that puts you at risk for nasty stuff, even cancers, and it's something you can't really "feel". It's weird. Good for you for catching it now and doing something about it! [thumbsup]

This last year my bp was tipping at 140/95 and the doctor said I was to take steps to lower it or I'd have to take the meds. That was a wake-up call.

Now it's about 115/75 around the average. I got one of those home blood pressure testers, they're great, because even being in the doc's office made my bp go up. I cut down on sodium intake by primarily making my own meals from scratch and going vegan. In my case, I enjoyed cheese which has a lot of sodium, and then there's those greasy spoon breakfasts which I used to LOVE. I also lost about 12 pounds and am doubling my efforts to lose more weight.

One thing that really helps and works to lower bp immediately for me is listening to progressive relaxation tapes every day, after lunch. I tested my bp before and after and there is usually a 10 point lowering! Those tapes are awesome for anxiety problems.

For the past 5 months I've been trying to get off an anti-anxiety drug called Effexor. It's fantastic for getting rid of panic attacks, but apparently it works by lowering the metabolism which resulted in weight gain and all the serious medical risks associated with that, including high blood pressure. That is one nasty drug to try and quit, the withdrawl is pretty bad and pretty dangerous.

Good luck to you! Exercise is awesome for high bp, btw! Btw, my favorite relaxation tape is the first part of "The Joy of Meditation" it's on iTunes.

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ewomack
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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 09:47      Profile for ewomack   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As said above, adjusting one's diet goes a long way to lowering blood pressure. So far (knock on formica) I have not developed the high blood pressure that runs rampant through my family. I eat meat only once a week, eat no dairy, watch my portions, and eat out a maximum of twice a week. The pounds have shed and overall my guts feel okay. Yay for me?

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 10:28      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
BooBooKitty _____________________ I have to second and third the exersize options. I am always suprised at how much my blood pressure falls after a stress test. The Cardiolgist has me come in no meds for three days prior, he claims he can't wind me up far enough unless I have three days for the lopressor to get out of my system, so when I arrive it is farly high then onto the treadmill usually twenty or more minutes untill I reach a full sweat, then until he is satisfied with the heart paterns, then the slow down. Usually thirty minute after and for three days my B/P will be 100/65 then start back up, he also claims I am too lazy and that if I worked out more the B/P would stay down with out the lopressor.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 10:31      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
*hugs*

Simultaneous job/life stress can be utterly vile. I know maswan said you had to have your kitty put down, do you have any others? (Study: Pets curb dangerous rises in blood pressure) If you don't want a pet right now, maybe something like dog walking for an animal shelter would help.

I signed up with MyPyramid Tracker to help monitor my vitamin intake. It gives you a lot of overall nutritional information, including sodium, cholesterol, and fat, which I imagine are your big concerns right now.

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Nitrozac

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 10:56      Profile for Nitrozac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
oOo pyramid tracker, good linkage, fs! [Big Grin]

I just wanted to add, the following foods, though awesome and delicous have an insane amount of sodium in them:
Pizza ( it's in the bread, the sauce, and the cheese)
Sushi ( the soysauce)
Chinese food ( the soysauce)
Olives
Bread
chips (obviously)
Yves jumbo veggie dogs (and other such products)
soups (ones you don't make yourself)
Swiss Chard ( yeah, who knew?)

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business attire
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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 11:35      Profile for business attire     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
great link, indeed. Its been entertaining me and sucking up work time. Although I'm a bit confused.

Except for weekends, which I consider "free time" from my diet, I'm intaking around 1500 Calories per weekday (which is probably too low, but I'm not going hungry so I figure I'm okay), and exercising about 300 Calories per day. If it takes 2100 Calories to maintain my bodyweight where it is with a sedentary lifestyle.... why the hell aren't I losing weight?!

The addition of a reasonable amount of chips and dip on a Saturday should NOT make that much of a difference, if you ask me.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 12:24      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by business attire:
great link, indeed. Its been entertaining me and sucking up work time. Although I'm a bit confused.

Except for weekends, which I consider "free time" from my diet, I'm intaking around 1500 Calories per weekday (which is probably too low, but I'm not going hungry so I figure I'm okay), and exercising about 300 Calories per day. If it takes 2100 Calories to maintain my bodyweight where it is with a sedentary lifestyle.... why the hell aren't I losing weight?!

The addition of a reasonable amount of chips and dip on a Saturday should NOT make that much of a difference, if you ask me.

Are you sure you are accurately inputing the portions? That can be tricky when guestimating, plus American "portion" sizing is soooo out of whack.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 12:47      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
More low salt ideas:

Instead of using straight table salt, use a salt/spice blend. You get more flavor with less.

When baking, reduce the amount of salt you use. I usually use about 1/2-1/3 less, it depends on the food.

Use salty additives (soy sauce, sambal olek) as a replacement for salt when cooking. They contain less salt than an equal amount of table salt. Again, the additional flavor makes the reduced amount of salt in the finished dish less noticeable.

Cook rice/pasta/potatoes/etc. without salt. You can add seasoning afterward. (Maswan complains bitterly about this but if he cooks it, it's almost too salty to eat.)

When making soup or sauce, use half the salted broth/boullion the recipe calls for, make up the rest with water and add other spices for flavor. (Some onion and garlic softened adds a lot of flavor, use a little bit of oil and a couple tablespoons of water for less fat.)

Try reduced-sodium (and reduced-fat) foods. Usually the sodium and fat free foods are kind of gross, but getting 1/3rd to 1/2 the amount of fat and salt in several of the foods you eat fairly frequently is an improvement. (And you are more likely to maintain a habit change that involves healther replacements for the things you enjoy than cutting them out entirely.)

I'm not a health nut. I just don't like oily and salty food much. [Big Grin]

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 13:43      Profile for business attire     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by fs:
Are you sure you are accurately inputing the portions? That can be tricky when guestimating, plus American "portion" sizing is soooo out of whack.

Pretty sure. I actually measure out most things like cold cereal, and the rest of my diet is almost shockingly medieval -- mostly whole grain breads, smoked or roasted meats, hard cheeses, and raw fruits/vegetables -- and surprisingly the measurements are in there. 6 inch round of unleavened bread, sized the apples by diameter rather than weight... I was impressed. Granted, I'm sure the bread's calories, etc. are varied by baker, but close enough, right?
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BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 14:53      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hi everyone!

Thanks for all the kinds words and tons of advice! Of course I've been doing my share of googling for information. I did go out and get myself a home bp monitor doohicky. So far the meds seem to be keeping my bp around 120/80 on average. What I didn't like were some of the little side effects that I had like: slight increase in heart rate, some anxiety, etc. Today is day 6 on the meds and I think my body has adjusted to the meds.

I just got back from picking up some groceries on the way home from work. I'm trying to focus more on fresh fruits and salad greens. Okay, so tonight I will be making some chicken madras with rice, but I need to have leftovers for lunch!

On top of all this, it's made me more aware of the nutrition label on some prepared/packaged foods. I really wanted to get some Dr. Oetkers pizza for those nights when I get home late. I went through all the varieties they had and found that their mozzerrella pizza had the lowest sodium at about 440 mg per serving.

Exercise is definitely something I need to do more of. Last week I did pretty well. I biked to work 2 days and took a walk after dinner 3 evenings. Friday was crappy because it rained all day. On Sunday, I had gone up north for hashing and that produced a good 1.5 hr walk. This week will be tricky because the temps are going to hit 30C. But I'll see if I can squeeze in some time on the trainer.

Nitrozac: Your suggestion of using relaxation tapes sounds like a good idea. I look into the one you named. Goodness knows I can use a bit of relaxation! Today was pretty bad because the HD on my laptop at work decided that it wanted to fail! Yay! IS/IT will only replace it tomorrow morning. Boooo!

Again, thanks everyone! I hope to get this beat! I really don't want to end up taking this stuff long term. One of my former managers at work who's about my age has been on bp meds for 8 yrs already! That's scary!

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted July 23, 2007 19:35      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
You can make a much tastier, and much healthier pizza yourself than buying one premade. And the good thing is, you can eat more of it!

Here's a good recipe:

Dissolve 2 tbsp. yeast in 1 cup warm water with 1 tbsp. sugar. In a separate bowl, stir together 3 cups flour and 1 tsp. salt. Stir 1 tbsp. oil into the yeast mixture, then stir into the flour mixture. Knead together until it's smooth and satiny; add extra flour as necessary. Roll out or press into large pizza pan.

For sauce, either use a low sodium storebought tomato sauce, or make your own:

Mix together 1 large can of crushed tomatoes or 1 quart of tomato juice and tomato paste (how thick you want it is your preference). Add oregano, basil, thyme, dried onion and garlic (or use fresh sauteed in a little bit of olive oil), a tad of salt and some pepper. Spread on pizza.

Use a low sodium cheese, or try ricotta or cottage cheese (whichever is healthier). A little bit of a strong cheese mixed with a lower-sodium milder cheese will go a long way. Add your favorite toppings. Bake in a 350-degree ovenfor at least 20 minutes, or until bottom crust is crusty and cheese is golden brown. If crust gets done first, put pizza under the broiler to brown the cheese.

Pizza variations

Margherita pizza: brush crust with olive oil. Apply tomato slices in a single layer. Sprinkle on a handful of fresh basil. Add a few clumps of fresh mozzarella (the stuff that comes in water).

Crab pizza: A thin layer of a soft cheese covered in a thin layer of pasteurized crab meat.

Garlic mashed potato: Mix sauteed garlic into leftover mashed potatoes and spread in a thin layer on top of pizza crust. Sprinkle on some cheese (and a few pieces of crumbled bacon if you dare).

EDIT

FS's post reminded me of one change I make to my crust recipe. Instead of using all-purpose flour, I use one cup of whole wheat flour and two cups plus more to make the dough the right consistency of occident/hi-gluten flour. It's much better for you than using bleached, over-processed flour.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 03:53      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Here's my whole grain crust, too. (The salt is the reduction I use when actually making it, most people would probably use a full teaspoon.)

1-1/2 cups warm water
1 yeast cube or 1 package dry yeast
1 tablespoon brown sugar, molasses, or malt syrup
2/3 tsp salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups white flour
1 cup whole grain flour
1/2 cup oats

Combine water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit for five minutes. Add olive oil, flour and salt. Mix well, knead for about 8 minutes. Divide the dough and refrigerate or freeze any portions you will not be using. Let the dough rise, covered, for about an hour. Roll out flat on a floured surface and transfer to a pan. (For more crust around the edge, roll out slightly larger than the pan and fold the edge of the dough inward.)

For a slightly thicker crust, let the dough rise for 15 to 20 minutes before adding toppings and baking.

Preheat your oven at its maximum temperature. Reduce heat to 425 after putting the pizza in the oven.

Makes 4 12-inch crusts. (Freezes well, either rolled out or as balls.) Also good for calzones, and whole grain italian style bread or rolls.


Try jalepenos or another hot pepper as a replacement for pepperoni as a topping, too. I know there's also a soy "mozzerella" out there, but I've never tried making pizza with it.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 03:58      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by business attire:
quote:
Originally posted by fs:
Are you sure you are accurately inputing the portions? That can be tricky when guestimating, plus American "portion" sizing is soooo out of whack.

Pretty sure. I actually measure out most things like cold cereal, and the rest of my diet is almost shockingly medieval -- mostly whole grain breads, smoked or roasted meats, hard cheeses, and raw fruits/vegetables -- and surprisingly the measurements are in there. 6 inch round of unleavened bread, sized the apples by diameter rather than weight... I was impressed. Granted, I'm sure the bread's calories, etc. are varied by baker, but close enough, right?
They do have a lot of foods and a lot of selection in portion sizing to choose from. I'm impressed so far.

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BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 05:55      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Wow! Thanks for the pizza crust recipes. I've been a bit leery about preparing any yeast-based doughs because they just never seem to come out quite right. I guess I'm a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to stuff made in the kitchen. [Big Grin] However, this is more of a weekend endeavour because some weeknights I won't have time to prepare stuff like this from scratch (ergo the premade pizzas). I've got some nice herbs growing on my balcony now, so I hope to be able to make good use of these plus any spices I have in the cupboard. [Smile]

Meanwhile, with regards to proportions, I am trying to keep an eye on this. Depending on what I make, if it's awfully good I have a tendency to eat too much of it. [Razz] If I have leftovers for lunch, I use 2.5 cup Ziploc containers. I think they're small enough to hold just enough food. I try not to stuff them too much.

With regards to pets, I've still got 2 more felines roaming about. One of them is very clingy (I think he missed the other one), so there's no problem getting a cat in my lap. However, there are times when have something cling to you like that gets a tad annoying. ;-)

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 07:20      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by BooBooKitty:
However, this is more of a weekend endeavour because some weeknights I won't have time to prepare stuff like this from scratch (ergo the premade pizzas).

Make extra and freeze it (which is what I do because I actually hate cooking). Falafel freezes really well. So do beans and rice. I'm about to do a big batch of hummus and try freezing a bunch of that too, I'll let you know how it keeps. (Plus, with hummus, I can make a big batch of the base and mix different spices and seasoning in after I split it up. Last time I made some with roasted habenero and some with sun dried tomato. They were both pretty good and maswan was happy with a less spicy option.)

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 07:27      Profile for business attire     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I have a really good nutritionist-written bean dip recipe that is easy peasy. I freeze it in itty bitty disposable containers, then use it as an ice pack in my lunch. Easy to make, easier to thaw, keeps lunch cold, tastes great with blue corn chips.

I'll try and find that one.

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 08:27      Profile for business attire     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
aha!

Basic Black Bean Dip
Serves 12 (as appetizer)

1 black beans, canned (15 oz.) -- drained
1 can green chili peppers -- drained
1/4 cup salsa -- use what you have
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon garlic -- pressed
1 squeeze lime or lemon

Dump it all into a food processor and whir like mad. When it's done, blop it into a bowl and serve with any type of chip that turns your key. But preferably with a healthy one.

Per serving: 14 Calories (kcal); trace Total Fat; (11% calories from fat); 1g Protein; 2g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 58mg Sodium

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted July 24, 2007 15:39      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
A couple things I've learned over the years from baking a variety of bread:

Freezing your yeast lets you store it much longer, just make sure it's at room temperature before you use it.

Use HOT water, not boiling, but at least 110 degrees. If it's too hot, the yeast will be killed. If it's too cool, the yeast won't activate.

Adding a little bit of sugar gives the yeast something to feed upon. You can also use honey or brown sugar or even molasses or corn syrup.

Let the yeast "work" in the sweet-water until it's foamy.

Mix into the dry mixture and knead well. Kneading breaks the gluten strands and gives the finished product a more uniform texture.

Cover the dough and set it in a warm place if you're going to let it rise before using. Rising lets the yeast work and create more carbon dioxide bubbles, which can make the dough lighter and less dense. If you let it rise, punch down and knead again after the dough has doubled in size, then put into bread pans or make pizza/stromboli/calzones.

Don't use too much whole grain/coarsely milled flour because you will wind up with a heavy, dense bread. Trenchers, my family calls them. They were good in the Medieval age, but not so much now.

For bread, after getting it out of the oven, rub the crust all over with butter to keep it soft. If you want a crispy crust, apply an egg wash or melted butter before baking.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 25, 2007 02:20      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
BBK, also if you are going to start doing a lot of baking, you might want one of these. Maswan uses it all the time; of course we don't actually buy bread except for Wasa and tortillas (and occasionally flatbread if he's feeling lazy and doesn't want to roll it out.)

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