Sunday, January 23, 2011

Baking Bread From Scratch

I love to bake bread almost as much as I love to create items for the Etsy shop. As some of you know, we had to live without a fully functional kitchen for several months due to water damage from a broken dishwasher hose. To celebrate our kitchen being almost finished, this Sunday I baked two loaves of bread. My secret to making the bread rise beautifully is to use very hot water to activate the yeast (120 degrees!) It is also helpful to bake something else in the oven while the dough rises on the warm stove top. The following recipe is taken from the Wedding Cookbook by Betty Crocker.

Country White Bread

5 to 5 1/2 loaves of bread flour
1 t sugar
1 package active dry yeast
2 cups very warm water 120 degrees
2 T vegetable or olive oil
2 t salt

1. Mix 2 cups of flour, sugar and yeast, add warm water and stir.
2. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand until bubbly
3. Stir in oil and salt. Stir in remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time. Knead dough for at least ten minutes. No cheating!
4. Place dough in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, place in a warm place for one hour.
5. Grease loaf pan and place dough inside the pan. Let rise for another 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

6. place a pan of water on the bottom rack, then place loaf above. Bake 35-40 min.

The dough rises best when dinner is baking in the oven.

Wheat and White Country Loaves

Wonderful with Pot Roast!

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