I’ve been trying to perfect bread for a while. Or at least try and find that one perfect loaf that I can master easily, and make modifications to suit my purposes.
I do believe I have found it. This bread is sweet, lovely, mouth watering, and super soft. Its the bread I make at home that has that same softness as Wonder Bread from the store.
Its a sweeter bread, so it does make good sandwiches but makes them slightly sweet. It makes a mean Italian Grilled Cheese, and would probably make the greatest French Toast known to man.
The one thing about this recipe is that it uses a whole 8 cups of flour! That’s a huge mount! AND 3 tablespoons of yeast! I knew in the beginning they would turn out to be these beastly loaves. The slice above is about 1.5 slices tall if you compare it to normal sandwich bread. The loaf pans are 3-4 inches tall, and the loaf goes another 3-4 inches above the rim.
These are serious loaves of bread.
This is just the sponge. Water, sugar, yeast, salt and half of the flour. That bowl? That’s the bowl to my mixer. Its the second largest bowl I own.
This is after about an hour. This sponge is going to take over my bowl soon if I don’t get on with it.
Plus the sponge was incredibly sticky. It tried to eat my spoon. It didn’t mind the fact that it would get stuck in its teeth something bad. I made the mistake once of trying to knead this beastly bread in the mixer. I think the mixer then got mad at me because all it did was throw flour at me.
Angry little mixer.
So then I knew I had to knead it by hand. It really is a large piece of dough to mix by hand but it really isn’t too bad since the dough is rather soft.
It will usually take almost all the flour I throw on the board, but sometimes like today it decided it just wasn’t as hungry. I guess the appetizer of my spoon helped its hunger.
After all that kneading, its a nice and soft ball. It doesn’t look like a beast, but its like a child. They grow and grow and before you know it, its completely taken over and its toys have taken over your whole house.
I don’t know what normal people use to oil their bowls for rising. I tend to use olive oil because it’s what I have in my little drizzle bottle next to the stove. I just have a thing against that spray stuff because I some how end up getting it all over my glasses.
I just have issues in the kitchen.
The first time I saw this, it scared me. I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I had never seen dough get that big before.
This was only after about 45 minutes.
Seriously. Has this happened to you? This is the largest bowl I own. I don’t want to say I need bigger bowls, but that might be a necessity.
Its like one of those evil aliens you see in movies. What was that, something about a blob? Blob attacks or something. It just might attack me. Or eat my oven.
Now I suck at shaping loaves. They look like weird worms half the time. So I’m not showing you that.
I bet your wondering why I only have 2 strangely shaped loaves and one lump. That lump is going to be turned into something to shock my husband. He loves it when I suddenly whip up something and he looks at me wondering “We had that?”
Sweet White Bread
Makes 3 large loaves. Or 4 closer to regular sized loaves. Or other great things.
- 3 cups warm water
- 3 tablespoons active dry yeast
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 4 tablespoons canola oil
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 8 cups bread flour
- In a large bowl, combine warm water, yeast, salt, oil, sugar, and 4 cups flour. Mix thoroughly, and let sponge rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Gradually add about 4 cups flour, more or less until a soft dough is achieved. Kneading until smooth.
- Place dough in a greased bowl, and turn to coat. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
- Punch down the dough, let it rest a few minutes. Divide dough into three equal parts (roughly 700g each).
- Shape into loaves, and place in three greased bread pans. Let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes.
- Bake at 350ºF for 20 minutes. Reposition the loaves for even baking and tent loosely with foil. Bake an additional 15 minutes or until the internal temperature of the loaf is around 190ºF and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
- Let the loaves cool on wire racks for at least 30 minutes before slicing.