Introduction: Making White Bread by Hand

Picture of Making White Bread by Hand

I got the recipe for making white bread from my father who worked in a bakery at one point in his life, this recipe does not use a bread maker or food processor or electric mixers of any kind, this is all by hand.

you will need
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1Kg Bread Flour (strong white flour)
10gm Yeast
15gm Salt
600ml Warm Water
1 Tsp Sunflower oil


tools
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a large mixing bowl
scales
a jug
cups (for holding ingredients)
a black bin liner
a tea towel

Step 1: Mixing and Kneading

Picture of Mixing and Kneading
sieve out the flour in to the bowl, and add the salt and yeast, mix all the dry ingredients together, then add 600ml of warm water and mix together.

once they are mixed together make it into a ball, lightly flour the worktop and your hands, get ready for some exercise.

Knead the dough for no less than 10 minutes, I set a timer on my iPhone, for those who do not know how to need what you do is stretch the dough using the heel of your hand pushing the dough out, then fold in half and give it a quarter turn and do again, quarter turn and knead, keep going for the full ten minutes.

here is a video I found to show you how to knead.


 

Step 2: The First Rise

Picture of The First Rise

now you need to leave it to rise.

brush a bowl using a pastry brush with sunflower oil, place your dough in the middle and brush the dough with oil.

put the whole bowl with the dough in it inside a black bin liner, twist the bag so its sealed and put the end under the bowl.

Now leave it for 1 and a half hours, preferably in a warm place, it was warm in my kitchen so I didn't need to move it.

why are we doing this, we put it in the bag so it can sweat, during this time the yeast will produce co2 and the dough will double in size.

Step 3: Knocking Back and Second Rise

Picture of Knocking Back and Second Rise

Take the bowl out of the bag.

we now need to push out the excess gases, this is called knocking back, what you do is press your fist in to the dough a couple of times, you will hear a hiss as you do this.

now we need to prepare the dough for the second rise also known as proofing, if you're making loaves like I was just cut the dough in half and gently form it in to a loaf shape by folding the edges underneath, if you want to make rolls cut it up in to a dozen pieces and gently form them in to rough balls.

take your tea towel and make it damp and place it over you dough and leave it for 45 minutes.

if you have a gas oven now would be the time to preheat it, if you're using a fan assisted oven then you can leave it until 15 minutes before the second rise has finished.

for electric ovens preheat to 175 degrees Celsius (350 F), gas mark 5 for those using a gas oven.

Step 4: Baking Time

Picture of Baking Time

now the second rise has finished take the cloth off and cut a couple of shallow cuts across the dough.

brush some oil on the surface of a baking sheet and put 1 piece of dough in the middle.

put your sheet in the centre of the oven.

check your loaves after 40 minutes, to check them see if they are lightly brown, if they are tap the top of the loaf it should sound hollow, also tap the bottom which should also sound hollow. if they don't pop them back in and check on them again in 5 minutes.

once they are ready put them on a wire rack to cool, I like to leave them until they are just a little warm, then cut and eat with just some butter. MMMMMMMM Tasty.

Comments

kpayne2 (author)2014-01-31

Thanks for the recipe. I just tried it for the first time. I usually don't try making bread because my baking skills leave a lot to be desired, and a lot of bread recipes are too dense and cake-like. This was good, though. Like you said, it's similar to what you'd get in a bakery.

vincentmcmurray (author)2012-08-27

Do you dampen the tea towel with cold or warm water or does it matter?

I used warm water, well it was from the cold tap but it was perticularly cold i would have said luke warm.

Thanks
Vince

Schlumpfsa (author)2012-08-16

do you have any more Recipes this one sounds good. what sort of oven do you use ?

n1cod3mus (author)Schlumpfsa2012-08-17

at the moment i'm using a standard gas oven, but it would work better in an electric fan assisted oven. Only recipes I have is one for pigs in blankets and one for the ultimate victoria sponge cake.

https://www.instructables.com/id/Pigs-in-blankets/

https://www.instructables.com/id/The-Ultimate-Cake/

n1cod3mus (author)2012-08-12

i tried a piece of this last night and it was amazing, the taste and texture was the same as if i had bought it from the bakary!

this is the first time i have made bread and got it spot on, thanks dad.

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