-

B​aking therapy: white country bread recipe

Finding ways to stay positive as we s​elf quarantine

Doug Smith posted in Baking
1y ago
5.6K

A​s a person that loves being out and about in the community, this social distancing thing has been very difficult. The worst part has been trying not to mentally check out, or binge watch TV.

For me, one way to fight this has been by taking daily trips to the local market (practising social distancing) for fresh fruits, vegetables, and other supplies to bring home and cook. And it has become obvious that people are buying up basic supplies like sandwich bread.

N​o bread at the local market

N​o bread at the local market

N​o bread at the market? No problem. This is a great opportunity to hone my bread baking skills. Not only is this a very easy recipe but it's also good therapy. As we carefully measured the ingredients, it allowed us to talk about something other than the news of the day; looking in the mixer with anticipation to see how this gooey mixture moved slowly from water and flour to a shiny stretchy dough ball.

Play video
0:28

Looking on with anticipation

We then transferred the dough ball into a large bowl to proof. Don't rush it here! It takes a little time. (Yes, we kept walking by the bowl talking about how good it smells, maybe even taking a peek or two.)

A​most ready

A​most ready

T​he great thing about baking bread is that it makes the whole house smell so good. To be honest it was very little work, but we found ourselves talking about what we were going to eat with our fresh baked bread, and how we would make different shapes and sizes over the next few days. I would call this a flavorful distraction from the stress of the day.

Country white bread

Great white bread for a sandwich or toast

Prep time5h
Cook time30min
Total time5h 30min
Serves2
MealB​read

Ingredients

  • 7 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tbsp sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp (2 packets) instant yeast or active dry yeast

Instructions

Making the dough

  1. Add yeast to lukewarm water and set aside.
  2. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add salt.
  3. Mix and stir everything together to make a very sticky, rough dough. If you have a stand mixer, beat at medium speed with the dough hook for about 60 seconds. If you don't have a stand mixer, mix with a wooden spoon until everything is combined.
  4. Next, let the dough rise. Just let it stay there, covering the bowl with a tea towel for 2 hours till it doubles in size.
  5. Refrigerate it for at least 2 hours, up to a few days.

​Baking the bread

  1. It's time to make bread! Sprinkle the top of the dough with flour; this will make it easier to work with. Place the dough onto a floured work surface. Cut in half, then grease your hands and gently shape into a log. Place into a loaf pan.
  2. Let the loaf warm to room temperature and rise; this should take about an hour.
  3. Preheat your oven to 450°F while the loaf rests. Place a cast iron pan on the lowest oven rack, with 1 cup of hot water.
  4. Just before baking, take a sharp knife and slash the bread 2 or 3 times, making a cut about 1/2 an inch deep.
  5. Bake the bread for 25 to 35 minutes, until golden brown.

Recipe by

​Doug the Foodguy (Doug Smith)

Have you tried this recipe? Share your photos & thoughts in the comments below

Join In

Comments (19)

  • This bread looks so much better than supermarket bread 😍

      1 year ago
  • I want to bake more, not only are you making me want to but a close buddy posted some sourdough he made.

      1 year ago
  • I’m sad to report I’m also running out of baking supplies 😩

      1 year ago
    • That’s the worst. Can you get some new ones?

        1 year ago
    • Yeast is the main issue right now. I’m hopeful that I can find some soon. However we have started baking an old fashioned no yeast Irish soda bread.

        1 year ago
  • I would love to make some homemade bread, and I have a stand mixer like yours that sits on my countertop unused. However, I have been unable to find flour at any grocery store 😥 I think everyone had the same idea

      1 year ago
  • Looks delicious my friend. Its something I do quite often at home... Very similar recipe. Im no professional either. Just something about baking I love.

      1 year ago
19