Prep 3 hrs
Cook 30 mins
This has been a no-fail recipe, for me. Beautiful TALL loaves (they may not fit in the toaster very well). Once you're comfortable with bread-making, feel free to sub part of the flour with whole wheat flour, honey instead of the sugar, some cracked grains, etc. Note that rise *times* are an estimate, as here in South Dakota, winter rises always take longer!
- 6 -7 cups bread flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar (or honey)
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 4 1⁄2 teaspoons active dry yeast (2 envelopes)
- 2 1⁄4 cups warm water (120 - 130 degrees F)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- (Note: I proof my yeast by mixing 1 cup of the water [tepid only, ~ 80 degrees F], the sugar or honey, and the yeast in a bowl & setting aside to proof while getting the flour, etc., measured out.).
- In a large bowl, stir 3 1/2 C flour, salt, and butter until well mixed. Add warm water (and proofed yeast). Beat on low speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. (may switch to dough hook about this time, OR just use the dough hook from the beginning.) Beat on medium speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Stir in remaining flour, 1 C at a time, to make dough easy to handle.
- Knead 10 minutes with dough hook on mixer or by turning out on lightly floured surface & kneading by hand. Dough should be smooth & springy. Grease a large bowl, place dough in & turn so all sides are greased. Cover, loosely, with a damp towel and let rise in warm place until doubled in size.
- Grease bottoms & sides of two loaf pans.
- When dough has doubled in size, gently push fist in to deflate. Divide dough in half. On a lightly floured surface, flatten each half, with hands or rolling pin, into a 9 x 18 inch rectangle. Roll dough tightly, beginning at 9 inch side. Pinch edge of roll to seal, and then ends to seal. Cover loosely and let rise in a warm place 35 - 50 minutes, or until dough has doubled in size.
- Place oven racks in low position so tops of pans will be in the center of the oven. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Bake 25 - 30 minutes. (Bread is done at 200* F. I check with a probe thermometer).
- Remove from pans to wire rack & brush tops with the last 2 T of butter.
- Cool before slicing.
Wonderful recipe that used to be on the back of the flour package years ago. Only change was I use crisco for the butter amount and increase to 3 tablespoons. This recipe never ceases to garner praise from all who try it- thanks so much for posting!