I was off to a slow start with this whole bread making challenge but then it got cold out (yay!) and now all I want to do is bake bread non-stop! This one was my first ever "kneaded" dough. I say "kneaded" because you still mix it all up in a mixer with a dough hook first, and then knead it by hand after. And kneading is definitely not as hard as I thought it would be! Well, the recipe only calls for 30-60 seconds of kneading so can't really complain about that.
This bread was light, easy to slice, and toasts up real nice. The recipe I used makes 2 loaves so I baked both and then threw the one in the freezer for later. But then I ate half a loaf for dessert (it's really good ok?!) so I had to take the frozen one out the following morning, ha!
Here's the recipe I used from "Back in the Day Bakery: Made with Love" Cookbook.
Honey White Bread
5 1/2 cups AP flour
1 tbsp fine sea salt
1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter melted, and cooled
2 large eggs lightly beaten
1 cup whole milk
1 1/2 tbsp honey
3/4 cup room temp water
1 large egg lightly beaten with a pinch of sea salt for the egg wash.
- In a bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook combine flour, salt, sugar, and yeast. Add melted butter, eggs, milk, honey and water, turn the mixer on low speed and mix 2-5 minutes scraping down the sides of the bowl if needed until the dough comes together. (It will be kinda shaggy) Turn speed up to medium and mix for a full 7 minutes.
- Transfer dough (it will be rather sticky at this point) to a lightly floured work surface and knead for 30-60 seconds. Shape into a ball.
- Butter/spray oil a large bowl and put the dough in there, turning it to coat the outside in oil. Cover with plastic wrap and keep in a warm area for an hour (I preheated my oven for 200 then turned it off and put my bowl in there)
- Grease 2 loaves pans. Divide the dough into 2 equal balls, roll each one out to the size of a 8 1/2 x 11 piece of paper. Then starting at the small end roll it up in to a log and place it seam side down in the loaf pan. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise again for another hour or until doubled in size.
- Preheat oven to 350. Brush top of loaves with egg wash. Bake for about 40-45 minutes. Let cool and eat that sucker.
Making bread is awesome. I'll admit it's not something you can just whip up right before dinner, but it's totally worth the extra thought and effort.