Saturday, March 3, 2012

Best White Bread for the bread machine

I love my bread-maker. It is so convenient and easy. I love the smell of baking bread. I love that when I put the ingredients in the little metal bucket, I know a beautiful, smooth, wonderful loaf of bread is going to come out. And seriously, what could be easier?

I tweaked this recipe from last night before I went to lay down to rest. The result was a delicious loaf of bread that looked and tasted like a professional baker made it. The secret? I didn't have bread-flour on hand but I did have All Purpose Flour and my vital wheat gluten from the seitan post. So...I substituted in about 3/4 cup of vital wheat gluten into my flour and it came out beautifully. I also substituted grapeseed oil (from Trader Joe's, $3.49 for 16 oz) for the vegetable oil. It's lighter and healthier for you, and organic evaporated cane sugar because it hasn't been (possibly) refined with charred animal bones to make it bright white. I buy mine in the bulk section of my market for a little over $2 a pound, versus upward of $5 to $7 a pound pre-packaged.

* 1 cup warm water (~110ยบ F)
* 2 Tbs. organic evaporated, unrefined cane sugar

(if you have to buy packaged, Florida Crystals is supposed to be a good one. Click on the link and go to page 3 for a 55 cent off coupon)
* 1/4 cup grapeseed or safflower oil (or canola if you must - do not use corn or olive oil)
* 2 and 1/4 cups all purpose unbleached flour
* 3/4 cup vital wheat gluten (all good vegans/vegetarians should have this on hand anyway)
* 1 teaspoon fine sea salt or kosher salt
*1 (.25 oz) package of dry active yeast - don't use the rapid rise

(these directions are specific to my bread machine; if yours has different directions, please follow them)

1) Add the water, sugar, and oil to your bread machine pan.

2) In a bowl, mix the flour, the wheat gluten, and the salt, and whisk together; your flour will now be light and silky (it's kinda fun to feel that smooooooth feeling), and carefully add it to the top of the water/oil mix.

3) Make a small well in one of the corners of the flour being careful not to allow the water to come through, and pour your package of yeast into the well.

4) Shut the lid, and use the Basic or White bread setting with the lightest crust color. Walk away.

5) When the bread is done, use a pot holder to remove the pan and turn the bread out. Slice and spread with butter and/or jam, honey, etc. Snarf it down. Repeat.

1 comment:

  1. I made a loaf of this bread for my mom's office, where all her coworkers are vegans, and they devoured the bread, and 2 people asked for the recipe.