So, I’ve been making my own bread for a couple years now and thought I’d share a few things I’ve learned.
I have a bread machine, but I rarely bake anything in it. I use it to mix and proof different doughs and with breads and rolls I proof again on my dryer.
When I make pizza dough I mix and proof in the machine then put in the fridge for at least a few hours ( sometimes a day or two) then take out about an hour before use.
Here is the recipe I use for our regular bread:
2 cups bread flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup potato flakes
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup water
3 teaspoons yeast
I put the wet ingredients in first and the yeast in last and run the dough setting in the machine. Once done I butter up my bread pan and gently roll and stretch out a loaf. Then I cover with a cloth napkin and set atop my running dryer for about an hour.
15 minutes before the second proof is done I turn the oven to 400 and then turn it down to 325 when I’m putting the bread in.
I also spritz the top with water prior to putting it in, bake for 15 minutes, spritz again and bake another 5 minutes. This gives me perfect bread every time.. unless it’s a particularly humid day.
When it’s super humid out I reduce the amount of water by about a tablespoon. Sometimes this does not help and I end up with a dense loaf that didn’t want to rise.
Baking times and temps may differ depending on your oven and area but it’s fun to play around and figure out what will work for you. The potato flakes keep the bread fresher longer and spritzing with water gives you a nice looking crust.
This is one example of what can happen on a humid day:
We think it looks like a crocodile 😉
Tasted good though!