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Practical Baker
Basic White Bread
Courtesy: King Arthur Flour
Wednesday, May 7, 2014 • Posted May 9, 2014

As indicated in the title, this bread came from one of the (MANY) King Arthur Flour catalogs that I get every year. In most of them, there are good sounding recipes, but they always seem to call for some ingredient that I cannot get locally and therefore must buy from them. I’m certainly not adverse to buying KA’s products; as a matter of fact, I have a large number of their cooking utensils. They’re a great company to deal with, but when I want to toss together a loaf of bread, calling them, placing an order, and then waiting for the order to arrive is not my idea of “practical” bread preparation! This is an excellent recipe, with a long history, and it makes up two loaves. So if you’ve got a family reunion coming up, these breads will make a hit with everyone!

Ingredients:

2 cups of warm water

2 tablespoons of honey or sugar

2 ½ teaspoons of instant yeast

2 tablespoons of soft butter or vegetable oil

½ cup of dry milk

2 teaspoons of salt

5 1/2-6 cups of all purpose flour

Process:

Combine all the ingredients, leaving out a ½ cup of the flour. Mix and knead it with your hands or a mixer, and add just enough of the left over flour to make a soft, slightly sticky dough.

Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning it over to coat all sides, and cover it with a damp towel. Let it rise until doubled, about 1-2 hours.

Deflate the dough, divide it in half, and form two loaves. Place them in greased 9 X 5 baking pans, cover, and let rise another hour, or until the dough is about an inch above the top of the pans.

Preheat the oven to 350, and once heated, bake the two loaves for 35-40 minutes, until they’re golden brown and a thermometer says the center of them has reached 190 degrees.

Remove from the pans and allow them to cool on wire racks.

Or, eat both of them as rapidly as you can, before anyone realizes you’ve made them!

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