Bread in a Bag
courtesy of Laurie Lautt, Montana State University Extension agent in Big
2 cups white bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons powdered milk
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 package Rapid Rise yeast
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup hot water (125 to 130 degrees F)
Extra flour to use during the kneading process
Combine white flour, whole wheat flour, yeast, sugar, salt and powdered
milk in a 1 gallon heavy duty Ziploc freezer bag. Squeeze upper part of
bag to force out the air. Shake and work bag with fingers to blend ingredients.
Add hot water and oil to dry ingredients. Reseal bag. Mix by working
bag with fingers, until the dough is completely mixed and pulls away from
On floured surface, knead dough 5 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.
Put dough back into bag and let it rest 10 minutes.
If working in teams, divide dough in half and shape. Let rise until
double in bulk.
Bake at 350 for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from
pan and cool on wire rack or dish towels.
Tips from an experienced "bread-in-a-bagger"
If you are interested in other bread recipes or activities related to making
bread, check with your Extension agent about a book called Breads for
4-H. It is put out by Red Star Yeast and includes games, recipes, lesson
plans and activities centered around bread. An excellent resource for a
year-round bread project! Red Star has recently come out with several other
books, including one to be used in the classroom. All are excellent.
It is important to have an experienced bread maker on hand while you do
this activity, so they can actually feel the dough to tell if it is "right."
Unfortunately, sometimes in the kneading process, the kids don't know how
much flour to work into the dough and it gets pretty dry. This is a nice
dough if it is done right.
I always try to work in some education about bread, the food guide pyramid,
wheat grown in Montana, etc. so that it isn't just an activity, but an
When we do this in the school, or with any group, we always get in a little
bit about hand washing and its importance.
Any time we do this activity, I have large bowls of flour, smaller bowls
of sugar, salt, and powdered milk set up on a table. I also have packets
of yeast and scissors on the table. The oil I measure out ahead of time
into little wax-coated 5-ounce drinking cups. The water we sometimes heat
in a coffee pot and then blend with cold water as we measure it. It is
important to measure the temperature of the water: too hot, of course,
will kill the yeast; too cool and it won't rise fast enough. I try to have
little signs in front of each ingredient so they know how much to measure
into their bags. In the bowls, I have measuring cups or spoons.
I always explain how to measure flour by saying that you do not
scoop flour with your cup, because it packs it. Too much flour makes a
dry product. Always spoon flour into the cup and then level with the flat
side of a knife for accuracy. So I have a large spoon and knife in the
flour containers, also. Now you and I know that we won't do this at home,
but it is important to give the kids a good grounding in proper measuring
With this recipe you can make one large loaf or two small ones, or two
small animals like a bear or turtle, etc.
Caution kids not to be too rough with their bags. They do break.
Show them the proper kneading method, and tell them that fingers are only
for turning dough, not for poking into the dough.
I always go through the process so they can see how its done, then I spend
the rest of the time helping them.
Return to Bread
in a Bag article in the Montana 4-H Clover
MSU Extension Agent