Growing up I remember thinking I didn’t like white bread, although I have no idea what that was based on. I’m still not a huge fan of store bought white bread and always get wheat, but homemade bread is another story!
I have had a free sample Red Star Platinum Yeast sitting on my counter for a couple of months, and while I knew I wanted to use it on bread, I wasn’t sure what kind. I ran across this recipe on Annie’s Eats, originally from Baking Illustrated, and decided it was the one I would make!
I haven’t made tons of homemade bread, but this was by far the tallest and prettiest one I’ve made yet! I was so happy with how it looked and tasted (we made some amazing grilled sandwiches with it), and would highly recommend you make a couple of loaves this weekend. We went through them fast enough, but next time I plan to freeze one loaf so I can pull it out the next time we run out of bread on accident. 🙂
Sandwich Bread (makes 2 loaves)
- 7 1/2 c flour
- 4 tsp salt
- 2 c warm milk (about 110°)
- 2/3 c warm water (about 110°)
- 4 tbs butter, melted
- 3 tbs honey
- 3 tbs sugar
- 2 envelopes instant yeast, or 4 1/2 tsp
Heat the oven to 200°, maintain for 10 minutes, then turn the oven off.
Mix the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer (I used my dough hook). Mix the milk, water, butter, honey, sugar, and yeast in a liquid measuring cup, or bowl. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the liquid. When the dough starts to come together, increase the speed to medium and mix for about 10 minutes (you want the dough to be smooth and thoroughly mixed). If the dough is still sticking to the sides of the bowl about halfway through, slowly add up to 1/4 c flour, 1 tbs at a time, until it is no longer sticky). Turn out onto a slightly floured surface and knead into a smooth ball. Place into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and place into the warmed oven until it has doubled in size (40-50 min).
Once the dough has risen, separate it in half and press each half into a rectangle, about 1 inch thick and no longer than 9 inches. Roll the dough into a cylinder, pressing with your fingers to make sure the dough sticks to itself, making sure to pinch the seam closed when it’s all rolled up. Place both rolls of dough, seam side down, into greased 9″x5″ loaf pans and gently press till it touches all 4 sides. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until dough almost doubles, about 30 minutes.
Place one oven rack in the lowest position, and another in the middle, and heat your oven to 350°. Place an empty pan (not glass) on the bottom rack and bring 2 cups of water to a boil. When your bread is ready, pour the boiling water in the pan and place the bread on the middle rack, baking until an instant-read thermometer placed in the center of the bread reads 195° (40-50 min). Remove the bread from the pan and cool on wire racks.
Source: Slightly modified from Annie’s Eats