I love this Basic White Bread for everyday sandwiches and toast. It’s terrific for French toast, too. And no yeast-leavened loaf could be easier to make. Heck, all you need is a bowl, a spoon, and a loaf pan! Watch me mix, knead by hand, and bake the bread right before your very eyes:
Click the “play” arrow to watch. And please forgive the lengthy kneading tutorial. I wanted you to learn how to knead bread the old-fashioned way, in real time!
I should add that kneading by hand isn’t terribly time-consuming. Who doesn’t have 8-10 minutes to spare for a great loaf of bread?
Furthermore, it’s great fun to feel the dough change its texture beneath the heel of your hand. What started out as scruffy and lifeless will suddenly become springy and smooth.
Well. I hope you’ll give this lovely loaf a try. As mentioned in the video, the bread is infinitely better than anything we can buy in a bag at the supermarket. And that’s a good thing because…who wants to visit a supermarket these days? xKevin
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Here’s the printable:
Basic White Bread
- a large mixing bowl
- A greased 8- or 9-inch loaf pan
- 1/3 cup warm (110°F) water
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 cup lukewarm milk (scalded then cooled)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons shortening
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- melted butter for brushing
- In the mixing bowl, whisk together the water, yeast and sugar. Then add the milk, shortening, salt, and all of the flour. Stir, with a stout spoon, until a stiff, shaggy dough develops -- about 1 minute.
- Tip the dough onto a non-floured work surface, and form it into a rough ball. Cover with a clean towel while you wash out, dry, and grease the mixing bowl.
- Hand-knead the dough until it becomes smooth, elastic, and not sticky -- 8-10 minutes. Do not add flour during the kneading process. Form the dough into a ball, place it in the greased bowl, and then flip the dough to grease the other side. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free location until the dough doubles in volume -- usually 90 minutes to 2 hours.
- Deflate the dough and drop it onto the non-floured work surface. Pat out the dough and then form it into a loaf. Put the loaf in the greased bread pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled in volume -- 30-45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Bake until the top of the loaf browns appetizingly, and the bread sounds hollow when rapped with the knuckles -- 25-30 minutes. Immediately unmold the loaf onto a wire rack and brush the top with the melted butter. Cool completely before slicing.