Mom's White Bread
Makes four 9-inch or five 8.5-inch loaves
I love making homemade bread, but I must admit that I prefer using my stand mixer or processor. My mother, on the other hand, always preferred to do it the old-fashioned way, probably because she started before those helpful appliances were available for home kitchens. This is one of her foolproof recipes. Another example is her whole wheat bread in the similar and related recipes links.
By the way, I have made this bread and, although it takes some work to knead and time to rise, it is very easy and makes a delicious loaf of bread for sandwiches or toast.
- 4-1/2 cups warm water (105 - 115° F)
- 3 packages active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar or honey
- 2 cups non-fat dry milk powder
- 12 cups all-purpose flour (more or less as needed)
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1/3 cup butter, preferably unsalted, softened
- 3 large eggs
Sprinkle yeast on warm water in a large bowl. Add sugar and stir. Mix in 2 or 3 cups of flour and all the powdered milk. Beat in all remaining ingredients. Stir in enough flour to make a stiff dough. Turn onto a floured surface and knead 10-20 minutes or until dough is smooth, satiny and no longer sticky, adding additional flour in small increments if needed. Shape into a ball and place in greased bowl. Turn once so all surfaces are greased. Cover with greased plastic wrap, then with towel. Place in warm, draft-free area and let rise until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours.
When dough is doubled, divide into 4 or 5 portions and shape each into a smooth ball. Cover and let rise 10 minutes. Roll each piece into a 7x15-inch rectangle to press out any air bubbles. Then roll up and shape into loaves. Place loaves into 4 greased 9-inch bread pans or 5 greased 8.5-inch bread pans. Cover and let rise until doubled.
To bake, preheat oven to 400° F. Bake loaves for 15 minutes. Check to see if tops are browning too fast and cover with foil if necessary. Bake 20-25 minutes longer. Loaves are done when sides pull away from pans and they sound hollow when tapped. Remove from pans and cool completely on racks before slicing. (Extra loaves can be wrapped tightly with foil, packed in freezer bags and frozen for up to three months.