Making bread at home is a cinch with this easy bread recipe. This recipe makes a delicious white bread that will rival any store bought bread you’ve had. A few basic ingredients with very little hands on time makes this bread a great way to treat your family to homemade bread.
I have been making my own bread for about 4 years. I use a variety of different methods and have tried a lot of recipes for all kinds of bread. When I saw this recipe for white bread, I was intrigued by the unique method used to form the dough in to loaves after the first rise. I’ve done this type of folding dough, but usually the technique is used to get a flaky result (like in scones or pastries). In this case the repeated folding and rolling seems to create a nice consistent crumb.
Flour amounts for bread can vary. I only used 5 cups of flour when I made this bread. The goal is to get a nice ball of dough that is tacky, but not overly sticky so you can’t work with it. The stickier the dough, the more tender the baked bread. I try to leave my bread dough as wet as I can stand it. Also, don’t worry too much about the water temperature. You just don’t want it too hot. If it’s too hot for you to touch, then it’s too hot. Too cool water will just slow down the rise, but too hot and it will kill the yeast so always err on the “too cool” side.
If the dough doesn’t roll out, just let it rest for five minutes or so to allow the gluten to relax a little.
Let rise again and bake!
- 2 cups warm water (around 110 degrees)
- 1/2 c. white sugar
- 2 envelopes yeast or about 4 1/2 teaspoons
- 4 Tablespoons oil ( I used grapeseed)
- 1 egg
- 6 to 7 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, combine yeast, water and sugar.
- Lightly beat the egg.
- Add the oil and salt to the egg and then add this to the yeast mixture.
- Add the flour a cup at a time, mixing it in with a wooden spoon as you go. Use a dough hook to mix the dough once it gets tough to stir with a spoon.
- The amount of flour may vary, but the dough should be a soft, slightly tacky dough and the sides and bottom of your bowl will be clean and all the dough will be on the hook.
- Pour a little oil into your mixing bowl and cover the dough with it.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave it in a warm place to rise. (I leave it in my oven with the light on).
- Allow dough to rise until doubled (about an hour, give or take).
- Punch dough down and remove from bowl on to a counter.
- Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough as thin as you can get it. It will be about 2? square or a little more.
- Now, fold dough over in half and roll it again. Keep folding it over and rolling it until you have a rectangular hunk of dough roughly the size of a loaf of bread.
- Cut this dough into 2-3 equal parts, depending on the size of your pans.
- Take each piece of dough and fold the outside edges to the bottom. The top will sort of get rounded, and it will keep this shape as it rises the second time.
- Put the dough in to greased loaf pans. Let this dough rise again until doubled.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- When the loaves have doubled, bake them about 30 minutes until they are nice and golden brown or have reached 180 degrees internal temp (use a meat thermometer to tell!).