Thursday, May 5, 2011

Basic White Bread

Don't you just love the smell of you house as bread is baking.  Can we say Heaven!! If you have never made bread before... Try it. It's awesome. Don't get intimidated. Just try it. You don't need any fancy equipment or even a bread maker. If you have a nice heavy duty mixer, that is ideal. (egg beaters wont work too far into the process) Otherwise after the first couple of cups of flour, you will need to start mixing by hand.  I've made this recipe hundreds of times and used my hands quite a bit. Don't be afraid to play with it and get your hands dirty.  It's fun!

This is a simple white bread recipe.  You don't have to use any special flour, just plain white four will do.  I had some extra bread flour this time so I decided to try it.  It made it taste even more light and fluffy.  It also made it rise, like I have never seen before.  So if you have bread flour, go for it, and just fill your pans about 1/4 of the way instead of 1/2. Otherwise, plain ol' white flour works beautifully. Also its not necessary, but it makes a HUGE difference.  You will want to use SAF yeast.  Nothing works better than SAF.  You can find it at food storage stores and specialty bakeware/cookware stores. This recipe come from a friend of mine.  She gave it to us to use in our church cookbook. 

Basic White Bread

4 tbsp, saf instant yeast. 
5 C Water
1 C Canola oil
4 eggs
1 C sugar
2/3 c Powdered dry milk
2 tsp salt
14 c. flour approx (bread flour works best but all-purpose is still great)

Mix 5 cups flour, salt, sugar, milk and yeast.  Add Water, oil and eggs.  Mix thoroughly and add flour just until it pulls away from the sides.(of mixer)
Let rise until doubled, punch dough. About like this :)

For bread... put into greased bread pans. Let rise until its the size of a nice big loaf of bread. For rolls, roll into balls and place in a baking pan about a half inch to and inch apart. Let rise until doubled. Bake about 30 minutes. (Less time for the rolls.When they start to get golden brown... they are done.)\

Tip: the key to light and fluffy bread, is using as little flour as needed.  When the dough starts to pull from the sides of the mixer, or becomes just easy enough to handle with your hands, it's ready. It's better to flour or oil your hands to shape it, rather than have it easy enough to handle with out doing that. 

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