Monday, January 25, 2010

fresh baked bread

Since it's pouring rain in New Hampshire today (like, get the boat out, get the oars ready, it's really coming down hard out there, type rain), it seemed like a good day to stick close to home. And since we decided this weekend to finally get a stand mixer for the kitchen, I thought I'd test it out today by making a batch of bread.

Before today, I'd only made bread using the breadmaker we got from someone a few months ago on Craigslist - but today, the mixer mixed and kneaded, and then I rolled out the dough, shaped the loaves, let them rise, and baked them up. Still not true "totally by hand" baking, but still - it was more involved than just throwing everything in the bread maker and calling it a day! And it was fun - that mixer definitely is a wondrous thing!

So, if you're looking for a super simple bread recipe, here's the one we used (courtesy of Kitchen Aid's recipe booklet!).

Rapid Mix Cool Rise White Bread

6 to 7 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
3-1/2 teaspoons salt
3 packages active dry yeast
1/4 cup butter or margarine - softened
2 cups very warm water (120 F to 130 F)

Place 5 1/2 cups flour, sugar, salt, yeast, and butter in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and dough hook to mixer. Turn to Speed 2 and mix about 20 seconds. Gradually add warm water and mix about 1 1/2 minutes longer.

Continuing on Speed 2, add remaining flour, 2 cups at a time, and mix about 2 minutes, or until dough clings to hook and cleans sides of bowl. Knead on Speed 2 about 2 minutes longer.

Cover dough with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rest 20 minutes.

Divide dough in half. Shape each half into a loaf. Place in greased 8 x 4 x 2 inch baking pans. Brush each loaf with oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 2 to 12 hours.

When ready to bake, uncover dough carefully. Let stand at room temperature 10 minutes. Puncture any gas bubbles which may have formed. Bake at 400 F for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire racks.


Sara said...

Your bread looks wonderful! Makes me hungry just to look at it..

Who is the baby in the middle photo of your header??? He's adorable...

Life Looms Large said...

I'm impressed! I let my mixer do lots of things, but my breadmaker tackles the bread around here.

I have the (possibly mistaken) belief that bread will never rise in my cold kitchen.



Colleen said...

Hi Sara - that's our little Mo-Pug in the header - she LOVES checking out all the veggies we bring home!!

Hi Sue - This bread did its rising in the refrigerator - a perfect recipe for our house, as I don't think we have a warm enough spot for bread to rise in our kitchen either (unless it's summer, when it's plenty warm!!)