Friday, June 26, 2009

White Bread

Before Paige was born, I had gotten pretty good at always having homemade bread around; it's so much better than that store-bought stuff! But, alas, she came along and threw things off track for a bit. Today I ran out of Sara Lee and decided that I wasn't buying any more! Usually we prefer wheat bread, but I didn't have enough whole wheat flour on hand, and we're actually waiting to find out if Brandon has Celiac Disease, (in which case we'll be going gluten-free) so I didn't want to run out and stock up. If you like white bread, this is a pretty good recipe. The following post is an older one that I hadn't published previously for wheat bread if you'd prefer.

5-6 c. all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp. sugar
2 t. salt
2 pkg. active dry yeast, (4 1/2 tsp.)
2 c. water
1/4 c. oil or shortening
1 Tbsp. margarine or butter, melted

Combine 2 c. flour, sugar, salt, and yeast; blend well. In a small saucepan, heat water and oil to 120-130 degrees. Add warm water to flour mixture. Blend at low speed until moistened; beat 3 min. at medium speed. By hand, stir in an additional 2 1/2 to 3 c. flour until dough pulls cleanly away from sides of bowl, (I use a wooden spoon, but I know a lot of people actually do this with their hands).

On a floured surface, knead in 1/2 to 1 c. flour until dough is sooth and elastic, about 5 min. Place dough in greased bowl; cover loosely with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rise until doubled about 45-60 min.

Grease two 8x4 or two 9x5 in. loaf pans. Punch down dough and divide into 2 parts. Shape into loaves and place in greased pans. Cover, and let rise until dough fills pans and tops of loaves are about 1 in. above pan edges; 30-35 min.

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Uncover dough and bake 40-50 min. or until loaves sound hollow when lightly tapped. Immediately remove from pans; cool on wire racks. Brush with melted butter.

This recipe is courtesy of the Pillsbury Complete Book of Baking.

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