Sandwich Bread

With the appliance rebate we received a few months ago, I bought my KitchenAid standing mixer. Best. Appliance. Ever. M talked me into getting one of the largest models available – and this was it. I was hesitant at first thinking I would never need such a large capacity, but I’m glad I took his advice. I use it several times a week  – it’s so powerful and convenient, especially when it comes to bread making. I have only tried hand kneading once but when I use this, it takes all of the guess work out of the process. All the bread I have made since I started using the KitchenAid has come out perfectly. It’s so nice to let the machine do all the hard work because if I didn’t have it, I would have to hand knead for at least 10 minutes – no thanks! Since it’s purchase in July, I haven’t bought a loaf of bread! Let me tell you – the difference is like night and day when comparing taste and quality. I used to make this with plain bread flour but about a month ago I started adding white whole wheat in combination with it. White whole wheat is milled from white spring wheat rather than the traditional red wheat and it’s lighter in color and milder tasting. If you buy this type of wheat flour, it’s recommended that you store it in the freezer to prolong shelf life. I keep this, my whole wheat and my semolina flour all in the freezer just to be safe. On this blog I will be sure to post all the different recipes that I try. I have so many bookmarked from other blogs, like a cinnamon swirl bread, brioche, Challah, dinner rolls, oatmeal bread…the list goes on.

This is my go to recipe for sandwich bread and I often double it to freeze the other loaf for later on in the week. We easily go through these two loaves before the weekend, and I have found that freezing the bread doesn’t change the taste or texture. Thanks for reading! I look forward to sharing more bread recipes with you.

White Sandwich Bread – adapted from King Arthur Flour

  • 1 packet “highly active” active dry yeast; or 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast; or 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 7 to 9 ounces lukewarm water
  • 12 3/4 ounces of unbleached all-purpose flour, bread flour or a combination of bread flour and white whole wheat flour (I use 5 1/4 ounces of whole white wheat and 7 1/2 ounces of bread flour)
  • 1 1/4 tsp of salt (I use bread salt)
  • 3 TBSP sugar (I use raw sugar)
  • 6 TBSP unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup Baker’s Special Dry Milk or non fat dry milk
  • 1/2 cup instant mashed potato flakes
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp of diastatic malt powder, optional (it helps prolong shelf life)

Directions –
1.  If you’re using active dry yeast, dissolve it with a pinch of sugar in 2 tablespoons of the lukewarm water. Let the yeast and water sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, until the mixture has bubbled and expanded. If you’re using instant yeast, you can skip this step.
2. Combine the dissolved yeast (or instant yeast) with the remainder of the ingredients. Mix and knead everything together—by hand, mixer or bread machine set on the dough cycle—till you’ve made a smooth dough. If you’re kneading in a stand mixer, it should take about 7 minutes at second speed, and the dough should barely clean the sides of the bowl, perhaps sticking a bit at the bottom. In a bread machine (or by hand), it should form a smooth ball.
3. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl. Cover the bowl, and allow the dough to rise, at room temperature, for 1 to 2 hours, or until it’s nearly doubled in bulk. Rising may take longer, especially if you’ve kneaded by hand. Give it enough time to become quite puffy.
4. Gently deflate the dough and shape it into an 8″ log.
5. Transfer the log, smooth side up, to a lightly greased 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pan. Tent the pan loosely with lightly greased plastic wrap.
6. Allow the bread to rise till it’s crested about 1 1/4″ over the rim of the pan, about 1 hour. Again, it may rise more slowly for you; let it rise till it’s 1 1/4″ over the rim of the pan, even if that takes longer than an hour. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 350°F.
7. Bake the bread for 15 minutes. Tent it lightly with aluminum foil, and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes, till the crust is golden brown, and the interior temperature measures 190°F on an instant-read thermometer.
8. Remove the bread from the oven, and gently loosen the edges with a heatproof spatula or table knife. Turn it out of the pan, and brush the top surface with butter, if desired; this will give it a soft, satiny crust. Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing. As soon as it’s completely cool, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap; or in a plastic bag, air pressed and fastened securely at the top.