Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Potato-Broth Bread

I love this bread, by far it's the best basic yeast bread I've ever made... It's great for sandwiches and wonderful toasted. The crumb is so soft and moist. Although, I wouldn't recommend baking this bread to a darker colour, I know a lot of people like their bread dark, but if you over bake this bread it will dry out. This recipe is from 'The Fannie Farmer Baking Book' and the original recipe says it makes two 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaves, but I was able to make 3 loaves easily and I shaped and froze the other two loaves unbaked...

3 cups warm potato water
1 pkg. yeast
1 cup mashed potatoes, room temperature
2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. sugar
3 tbsp. butter, softened
7 1/2 to 8 1/2 cups bread flour

Stir the potato warm water (100 - 110 degrees Fahrenheit) and yeast together in a large bowl; let stand for a minute or so. Add the mashed potato, salt, sugar, and butter, and beat to blend well. Add 6 cups of the flour and beat vigorously. Add enough additional flour to make a manageable dough, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for a minute or so. Let rest 10 minutes. Resume kneading, adding just enough additional flour to keep the dough from being too sticky to handle, until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise for an hour. Punch the dough down, divide in thirds, and shape into loaves. Place in greased loaf pans, cover loosely, and let rise to the tops of the pans, about forty-five minutes. Bake in a preheated 350-degree Farenheit oven for 40-45 minutes. During first 10 minutes of baking, place a hot water bath in oven with bread loaf(s). Remove from pans and cool on racks.

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