Tuesday, February 11, 2014

White Loaf Bread

Most people love sandwiches. Being able to customize any fillings to your preference and then putting it between two slices of bread, who doesn't love that! But a lot of people just use white bread from the stores which doesn't hold a candle to making your own white loaf bread at home. It's relatively easy and tastes 10x better than any storebought bread. I usually make this recipe on a Sunday or Monday and I have fresh bread that will last until Friday. And this recipe makes brilliant sandwiches, paninis, bruschetta, croutons, or even toast with some butter or jam in the morning. And if you have the end of the loaf leftover, just blitz in the a food processor and freeze it and you'll always have breadcrumbs on hand. Bottom line, it's not just the taste of this bread recipe but the versatility of the different ways you can use it that makes it better than any other bread in the world!

3 1/2 cups strong bread flour, plus more for dusting
2 tsp. active dry yeast
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/4 cups water, room temperature

In a mixing bowl, mix together all the ingredients until a dough forms, either knead by hand or in a mixer for 10 minutes

Place the dough in a floured bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let it rise for 1 hour

Deflate the dough and shape it into a loaf shape on a floured surface then place dough into an oiled loaf pan (any size)

Cover it again and let it rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size

Preheat your oven to 450°F and place a roasting tray in the oven to preheat as well

Make 3 quick slashes on the top of the bread with a knife then place it in the oven and take a cup of water and pour it in the baking tray to create steam

Close the oven door and let the bread cook for 10 minutes then reduce the oven temperature to 410°F and continue to cook for about 30 minutes, until beautifully golden brown

Take the bread out of the loaf tin and cool on a cooling rack for a least 15 minutes