Friday, February 25, 2011

Honey White Bread

*I don't often make my own bread, but yummm.  This just might convert me.  Perfect with butter or jam or sandwiches.  The bread baked up smooth and moist.

1/2 cup warm water (110 degrees)
2 packages dry yeast 
1 t sugar
1 1/2 c warm whole milk
6 T unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 1/2 T honey
2 extra-large egg yolks (I used just 1 whole egg)
5 to 6 c flour
1 T kosher salt
1 egg white, lightly beaten

1.  Place the water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment.  Add the yeast and sugar; stir and allow them to dissolve for 5 minutes.
2.  Add the milk, butter, and honey.  Mix on medium speed until blended.  Add the egg yolks, 3 cups of the flour, and the salt.  Mix on low speed for about 5 minutes.  With the mixer still on low speed, add 2 more cups of lour.  Raise the speed to medium and slowly add just enough of the remaining flour so the dough doesn't stick to the bowl.  Add the flour slowly; you can always add more, but you can't take it out.  Knead on medium speed for about 8 minutes, adding flour as necessary.
3.  Dump the dough out onto a floured surface and knead by hand for a minute, until the dough is smooth and elastic.  Grease a bowl with butter, put the dough in the bowl, then turn it over so the top is lightly buttered.  Cover the bowl with a damp towel and allow it to rise for 1q hour, until doubled in volume.
4.  Grease two 9x5 inch loaf pans with butter.  Divide the dough in half, roll each half into a loaf shape and place each in a prepared pan.  Cover again with the damp towel, and allow to rise again for an hour, until doubled in volume.
5.  Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  When the dough is ready, brush the tops with the egg white and bake the breads for 40 to 45 minutes, until they sound hollow when tapped.  Turn them our of the pans and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

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