SUBS - SALADS - DINNERS - CALZONE - PIZZA
Every trade has its tricks. Of course every trade has its training, too. This section is a mish mash of advice, how-to's and trivia. I'll add to it as I can.
Why Won't My Bread Get Big ?
I hear this one a lot. Here's everything you need to know about baking bread. Be patient. In fact, a good tip for the home baker is try to bake bread when you've got a hundred other things to do. Good bread is a 6-8 hour process. Standing over the dough and waiting is a sure way to become impatient and rush the job. Give each step of your recipe all the time it needs. Remember yeast is a living thing and once you add it to your dough it also becomes a living thing. It's got to breathe, it's got to eat and it's got to grow.
After you've kneaded the dough enough put it in a slightly oiled bowl at least three times bigger than your dough ball AND COVER IT WITH CLING WRAP. Don't use the ol' Damp Towel. Yeast makes three things while it's munching away at the sugars in the carbs; Water, carbon-dioxide, and alcohol. Since the dough is creating its own water vapor the cling wrap seals it in and your dough can't get crusty.
When the dough pushes against the cling wrap, unwrap it and "punch" it down. Round the dough, let it rest and then make it into whatever you're going to make out of it. Cover it very lightly with cling wrap again (don't seal it down) and when the bread is almost as big as should be if it were baked, put it into a Pre-heated oven for the time needed. Do yourself a big favor and get an oven thermometer and use it to see if your oven thermostat is accurate. Many times ovens can be off by 75 degrees. Also, make sure that you are using the proper flour, normally bread-dough requires a high-gluten flour.