2 1/2 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast or 1 pkg "highly active"
1 cup lukewarm water
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons butter softened
1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
1/2 cup instant mashed potato flakes
Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water - mix and allow to sit for up to 15 minutes. Add the butter cut into small cubes, add additional ingredients and mix well. I use the dough hook on my kitchenaid stand mixer on setting 1 - once the dough is well mixed, turn to setting 2 and allow to knead for about 5-7 minutes until dough is smooth, may stick a bit in the bottom of the bowl this is okay.
Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl (I spray mine with a canola oil spray) and cover with saran wrap, then place a towel over bowl. Put in your oven and turn on the oven light - this creates a nice small sealed space and the light warms it up enough to allow your dough to raise quickly even if your kitchen is cold (like mine). Allow to raise until doubled in size - this takes about an hour and a half.
Carefully punch the dough down to deflate. Move to a greased 5X9 bread pan, cover again with saran wrap this time spray the wrap with the canola oil too, put back in the oven for another hour to hour and a half. The bread should rise to at least an inch over the top of your pan - maybe a bit more. Take it out and preheat your oven to 350.
Once the oven is heated, remove the saran wrap and place in the center. Will bake for approx 30-35 minutes. When browned on top remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before turning out onto wire rack to finish cooling. Brush the top with butter if you'd like for a soft and delicious crust.
This bread has a slightly sweet taste, is moist and delicious and keeps well for several days in a sealed bag or container. It's perfect for sandwiches, toast, or just eating plain with butter.
Sunday, January 31, 2010