A rabbit bread tutorial- shaping bread- making fantasies in dough

My friend Celia, from the blog Fig jam and lime cordial, recently made a bear bread using

my last tutorial and she requested some other bread shapes.  Specifically a rabbit.

It is coming up Easter, soon, so I decided to add a couple of more animal shapes for

you to try if you are interested.

First of all, though- Celia was getting a little carried away, and said , “A Dragon!  Can you

make a dragon?”

Now I like dragons myself – and my grandson, Aidan is a little dragon crazy!

So I tried my hand and imagination for a dragon.


What do you think?

OH wait I forgot his flaming tongue!


Not bad for a first try- I’m going to work on this one just a bit!

Now on to the rabbit…

Go here for a recipe for honey whole wheat bread if you are looking for similar results.

There are also instructions for the basics of building a gluten cloak so that your bread will

keep his shape and not become all globby.


Here is a rabbit – all ready for an Easter Basket!

Make your dough and let it raise once.  Then portion out pieces to make the rabbit-


I used to weigh these out when I was selling them- so I knew exactly how many I

could get out of a batch of dough.  Now I dole out the pieces according to proportion.

the body is twice the size of the head-let’s say 3 ounces.  That makes the head  1 1/2 oz.

The legs are 1 ounce each about 1/3 the size of the body.  The arms are half the size of

the legs- 1/2 ounce each-  and the ears  – just a little smaller than the legs-3/4 oz.


Start off with the body and shape it into a long circle with a smaller top than bottom’


Pinch the bottom together between each shaping and tightening of the dough.


It should be oblong- wider at the bottom than the top- place on your sheet.

Now do the head the same way- only it can be round rather than oblong.

Place it on the sheet on top of the smaller part of the oblong.


Now start on the feet and think “Thumper” making the foot shaped like an exclamation point,

but flat on the edges so you can slide it just a little behind the hip part of the bunny.


Do it on both sides.


Now do the same thing with the arms and place them between the head and the body.



The ears come next- and you want to roll them into a small snakey little shape.


leave a little lip on the base of each ear so that you can place them slightly under

the head for support.

016Make his puffy cheeks – roll the balls as tightly as you can-


021place in the middle of the face and then using a bamboo skewer

start to tighten up and attach all the pieces.  Push the dough together at the edges and then into the

larger mass.  Do this with all the pieces, ears, legs, and arms and also between the head and body.


Now when working on the ears, shape the tips to be cute- and add definition.


Poke a hole for his bellybutton, and add dried currants for nose and eyes.



Bake at 350 to 375 degrees F for about 20 minutes- until golden brown.

Add a bow, a paper cut out carrot and a marshmallow or white chocolate tooth-

AND you have a bread rabbit.

I also made a few other animals while I was at it-


a dinner roll bunny, a ST. Patty’s guy,  a turtle


And a cat.

A little chicken soup with your bread?

I’ve been so sick- I haven’t been out of the house in over a week.

I had a flu shot- but those germs really don’t care- if they are out to get

you- then they do!

Any way- I was home- feeling quite sorry for myself and also just feeling

really bad.  Headache, muscle aches, coughing, congested- miserable.

And I started thinking about chicken soup.

I was able to make it to my computer and keep up with reading my emails and

blog posts- and my friend, Jane put up a recipe for Chicken bread soup on her newsletter,

See Jane Cook.   She put up a recipe from Joyce Goldstein that I had to try – so I made it

for myself

Soo good- it was bread pudding with chicken soup.  Velvetty and delicious- every bite

a comfort.  I almost felt well for the 20 minutes I took to eat a portion.

Here’s the recipe and a few pictures if you’d like to try it.




  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (optional)
  • 1 medium onion, cut into small dice
  • 2 ribs celery, cut into small dice
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 12 to 16 oz. total), cubed
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • Salt, pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 4 or 5 thick (1-inch) slices of sturdy bread
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese or half Parmesan and half Fontina

In a wide saucepan melt 1 tablespoon butter with 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook mushrooms  until the edges begin to brown.

Add 1 tablespoon butter and remaining 1 tablespoon oil and reduce heat to medium. Add onion, celery and carrots and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Add chicken and stir fry until golden, about 5 minutes. Add wine and boil until it evaporates. Add chicken stock, salt and pepper to taste and the cinnamon. Cover and simmer gently until the chicken is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet. Toast bread slices on both sides, adding more butter if necessary, until golden.

In a 6-quart, deep-sided casserole such as a souffle dish, arrange 2 to 2 1/2 slices of the bread in a single layer.  Sprinkle some of the cheese on top, then the chicken and vegetables. Top with remaining bread slices. Soup may be made and refrigerated up to 8 hours at this point.

Ladle broth over the top and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Cover loosely with foil. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes, depending on the depth of the casserole. The bread on the top should be chewy and the bread on the bottom, custardy. Makes 3 to 4 servings.

I left out the mushrooms- didn’t have any- and substituted 1 tablespoon of brandy for the wine.

I used my spelt bread because it is very sturdy and I had half a loaf sitting out.


This is the highlight of my week.

I’m making this one again- but when I feel well so that I can savor it and taste all the flavors.

This soup make have saved my life this week.


Or maybe just made it worthwhile to keep on living!

Spicy Indian Soup- using my preserved lemons in a recipe


I received salt  preserved lemons in olive oil for Christmas from my dil Willow.


They are really beautiful- and they smell divine.  I chopped up the peel and then

minced it fine to go into the lentil soup I made.


Here’s the Recipe.


1/3 cup olive oil

onions, chopped small

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 1/2 cups brown or green lentils

8-10 cups water

2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped

2 celery stalks, finely chopped

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp curry powder

1/2 tsp paprika

6-8 tsp lemon juice

3 tsp minced lemon peel ( or grated fresh peel if you don’t have any salt preserved lemons)

salt and pepper to taste


Heat up the oil in a large soup pot and add the onions, garlic and lentils.  Sautee gently for about 10 minutes, stirring

constantly-make sure that onion and garlic don’t stick to bottom of pan.  Pour water over mixture, stir and then raise

heat to medium and bring soup to a boil.  Add carrots and celery ( I chop my vegetables to about the size of the lentils

so that they cook uniformly and look suited to each other).  Boil for about 3o minutes and then lower the hear to low/medium.

Add the rest of the ingredients, as well as the salt and pepper.  Stir well and cover the pot, letting the soup simmer gently for

about 45 minutes.  Taste to check the seasonings- add a little extra if you think it needs it and serve hot.


Serve bread  alongside, I added some feta cheese to my bowlful-


Frank had his with a hot Hungarian sausage sandwich, boiled egg and cruditees.


This is my new favorite soup!

In My Kitchen-Feb 2013


In my kitchen… I have some cardamom sourdough rolls.


They are quite good- I love cardamom !

In my kitchen…


Are some coffee mugs I’ve been painting.


And some glass stones.

010I am working on some ornaments and making the

mugs for a rental property on the east coast- and my work place is – well- in my kitchen!

In my kitchen…


are cakes…


and cookies for my husband’s insatiable sweet tooth.

top left- Preacher’s cake (pineapple and walnut with cream cheese frosting)

top right-Chocolate Crazy cake( made without eggs- but plenty of cocoa!)

bottom- Chocolate chip cookies with walnuts and white choc pieces, as well as choc chips.

In my kitchen…


is a primrose – to remind me that Spring is coming. 

In my kitchen…


is a crocheted shopping bag a friend made me for Christmas.  I love it- I can knit,

but crocheting is hard for me- and this bag is so sturdy and strong- I’m looking

forward to using it at my next shopping trip!

I don’t have much more to show you- we ate most of the bread before I could take

a picture of it-I haven’t done anything else too exciting that I haven’t already blogged

about- and I’m still trying to banish the winter doldrums.

Take a look at Celia’s blog to see a list of IMK posts!

And add one of your own if you’d like to share a peek into your kitchen!