Intro: Soft Crust French / Italian Yeast Bread
Simple recipe when you've gotta be at home for 3 hours.
I love the taste of French or Italian bread but not the crusty crust, so I tweaked basic recipes.
3 Cups Bread Flour
1 1/4 Cup Water
1 Tablespoon Honey
2 1/4 teaspoons Yeast ( 1 package)
2 teaspoons salt
Step 1: Tools and Ingredients
2 Large Bowls
2 Loaf Pans
1 C Dry Measure
2 C Wet Measure
1 teaspoon measure
1/2 teaspoon measure
Graham Kerr Scraper (Optional)(but very handy)
Step 2: Feed Your Yeast
Add honey to water and warm to 105-115 degrees.
Measure out 1 Cup of the flour, add yeast, add honey water and mix with wire whip.
Set aside for 10 mins.
Set measuring cup with wire whip and spoon in sink and fill with water.
Step 3: Mixing It All Together
The yeast should be bubbly.
Add flour and salt half at a time and mix well after each addition.
Step 4: Knead the Dough
Dump the dough out of the bowl onto flour.
Put bowl and spoon in sink and fill with water.
Knead dough until you can't knead no more. Approx. 5 mins.
Adding flour as you turn and fold and knead so it doesn't stick to your hands or counter.
Step 5: Pam and Washing Up
Pam or butter large bowl and baking tins. (might as well do them at the same time)
Put dough in bowl, lightly spray with Pam and cover with saran/glad/generic wrap.
Place in warm place for 1 hour. (I use my oven)(turned off, of course)
Use the scraper and clean your counter top. (it's like a small dust pan)
Wash all dishes while waiting.
Step 6: Rise, Punch, Rise, Clean Your Pinball Game
When dough has risen punch it down, fold it over, then cover and let rise for another hour.
Do more cleaning.
(My Lord of the Rings pinball game needs some attention.)
Step 7: Turn Out, Divide, Roll
It rose again, and now you need to divide it.
I use a scale to try and keep them equal.
The dough is not sticky and will release from the counter top pretty easily.
You shouldn't need flour.
Roll your dough into a log shape and throw it in the loaf pan.
Step 8: Roll Out, Roll Up, Pinch, Throw Them in the Pans
Take the other blob and shape it into a rectangle.
Roll it up tightly and pinch the seam and ends closed.
Throw it in the other pan, cover and let rise for 45 mins.
Step 9: Finishing
Preheat oven to 385 degrees, pop them in, then take out when done.
Approx. 20-25 mins. Internal thermometer reading (yes, you have to poke them) of at least 170 degrees.
Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.
Slice and enjoy.
(no, I don't know why they have air bubbles, it's the first time that happened. Of course)
If you dedicate a shelf and tools to just making bread, it's a whole lot funner and easier.