in my attempts of finding the perfect bread recipe, I stumbled into a recipe that i felt it was worth trying. Julia Child is the author of this recipe and i just adapted it to my own needs.The result is a soft crust bread with a hearty, fluffy consistency. It reminds me of my mom’s bread.
2 1/2 cups warm water
1 Tbsp. active dry yeast
1 Tbsp. sugar
6 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup vegetable butter, softened
Pour 1/2 cup of the water into a bowl (preferably that of a stand mixer) and stir in the yeast and sugar. Let sit for 5 minutes, unit foamy. (If the yeast doesn’t do anything, toss it out and buy fresh yeast.)
Add the rest of the water and about half of the flour. Stir until well blended. Add the rest of the flour, the salt and butter and stir until it is well combined. Continue to knead (about 20 minutes) until it’s smooth and elastic. The gluten must be activated to get a smooth dough.
If using a hook mixer, mix for about 8 minutes.
Shape it into a ball and put it back into the bowl.
Cover with a tea towel and let it sit for 1 1/2 hours, until it’s doubled in size.
Butter two 4″x8″ loaf pans.
Punch the dough down (love that part!) and pat each piece into a rectangle that’s about 9″x12″ – or a bit bigger than a standard piece of paper.
Starting at a short end and roll it. Place seam side down in the loaf pans, tucking the ends in. Cover with the tea towel again and leave them for an hour, until they puff right up out of the pan.
Preheat the oven to 375°F and put the rack in the middle of the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the loaves are honey brown. Immediately turn the loaves out of their pans and onto a rack to cool.
Makes 2 loaves.