Basic Bread Recipe

Basic Bread LoafWhen it comes to delectable, perhaps the only thing that rivals the smell of bread baking is the warm taste of that first slice fresh out of the oven! Are you with me?

This my tried and tested everyday perfect basic bread recipe. It can be a basic white bread or made with as much whole wheat flour as you prefer – I mostly use a half and half or 2/3 to 1/3 ratio of all purpose flour to whole wheat flour. This is great compromise where I feel good about ensuring we’re eating whole grains, but without compromising the fluffiness of the loaf. (An important note: I add about 1/2 rising time for each cup of whole wheat flour)

I make this bread 2-3 times per week and it keeps well in a plastic bag for 3-4 days (by day 4 it may be only toast worthy).

Enjoy!

Ingredients (Makes 1 loaf)

1 CUP VERY WARM WATER

3/4 TBSP DRY ACTIVE YEAST

1/4 CUP SUGAR

1 TSP SALT

1 AND 1/2 TBSP CANOLA OIL

3 CUPS FLOUR – You can use just white all purpose flour or substitute 1 – 1.5 cups of whole wheat all purpose flour. Just make sure to add about 1/2 rising time if using whole wheat!

DIRECTIONS

Add water, yeast and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer (alternatively use a large mixing bowl) and let stand until yeast is foamy (approx 5 min).

Add salt and oil.

Using bread hook and with low-med speed (2 on a KitchenAid) mix ingredients, adding flour 1 cup at a time (alternatively, use a big wooden spoon).

Knead for 5 min (double the kneading time if kneading by hand). Dough should be smooth and elastic (check by poking with your finger – the dough should slowly spring back).

Form dough into a ball and let rise in an oiled bowl covered with a tea towel until doubled in size (approx 1 hour).

Punch down dough and form into a loaf. Let rise in an oiled loaf pan until risen 1-2 inches above the edge of the pan (approx 1/2 hour to 1 hour).

Bake at 350ยบ until golden (about 1/2 hour).

Let cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a rack.

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cooking Time: 30 min

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