Mashed Potato Bread

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There is nothing more inviting than fresh bread baking in the oven.  Since I started this blog I’ve made rye, wheat, pumpkin cheese, soft white, and now mashed potato bread. Pick my favorite?  Impossible.  They all are good, have their own unique qualities, and make a mean sandwich.

The more I make homemade bread the easier it gets and the less I like buying store bought bread. There are no preservatives in homemade bread and it’s very economical to produce.

Homemade jam and homemade bread toasted are a match made in heaven.

What more can I say? 

Ingredients:

4 tbsp. sugar

1 1/2 tsp. salt

4 tsp. yeast

1 1/2 c. mashed potatoes

1 cup water

3/4 c. heavy cream

1/4 c. milk

1/4 c. margarine

1 egg

5 3/4 c. flour, plus 1 cup for kneading

Instructions:

In a large mixing bowl, add sugar, salt, yeast, and 1 cup of flour.  In a separate bowl measure out remaining flour.

In a medium saucepan, add mashed potatoes, water, heavy cream, milk, and margarine.  Heat to about 120 degrees.

Add 1 cup of liquid to yeast mixture. Mix on medium speed (with mixer) or thoroughly by hand until well blended.  Alternate remaining flour and liquid to yeast mixture, scraping the sides of the bowl often.  Beat in egg.  When dough starts to pull from the sides of the bowl remove and place on floured surface.

Knead dough for approximately 5 – 8 minutes.  Form into a ball and place in a large greased bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled.

Once dough has doubled, remove from the bowl, punch down and  turn on lightly floured surface.  Cut and and shape into desired sized loaves.

Place dough into greased pans.  Let rise until nearly doubled.  Bake in 350 degree oven for approximately 20 minutes, or until bread is hollow when tapped and light golden brown.  Brush with margarine after removing from oven.  Cool slightly in pans before removing.

*Tip – I cooked 4 medium potatoes which yielded 1 1/2 cups mashed.  In a pinch you can use instant mashed potatoes. 

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Soft White Bread

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Ever since I made Pumpkin Cheese Bread that turned out so light and moist I have been on a quest to find a soft white bread recipe. 

When I found this bread recipe in an older Betty Crocker Cookbook I decided to give it a try although I’m not sure that the recipe is as important at technique when it comes to bread making.  I defied the recipes instructions and made the bread based on a few techniques that have worked well for me in the past.

1.) I used as little flour as I possibly could.  I prefer the dough be a little sticky prior to, and during the first kneading.

2.)  I tried to avoid overworking the dough.  I mixed by hand, and didn’t knead bread for an extended period of time.  This recipe advised to knead it for 10 minutes (prior to the first rising) – I kneaded it for about 5 minutes.

3.) When I punched the dough down (after the first rising) I briefly kneaded the dough to get the air bubbles out and then formed into loaves.  This recipe called for dividing the dough into halves and rolling each half into a 18×9 inch rectangle.

4.)  I baked it in a 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes.  Not a 425 degree oven for 30-35 as this recipe called for.

Recipe

2 tbsp. yeast

3/4 c. warm water (105 – 115 degrees)

2 2/3 c. warm water

1/4 c. sugar

1 tbsp. salt

3 tbsp. margarine, melted

6 1/2 c. flour – plus additional flour for kneading

In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in 3/4 c. of warm water.  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Add the 6 1/2 cups of flour to stiffen the dough but leave it slightly sticky. Mix thoroughly.  If you feel it’s necessary to add more flour, do so gradually.

On a lightly floured surface knead bread until it forms a nice round ball and is no longer sticky (about 3-4 minutes).  Place in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  Let rise until doubled – about 1 hr. 

Punch down and knead briefly to remove air bubbles (about 2 minutes), shape into loaves.  In this case I split the dough so I could make an 8×8 inch pan of cinnamon rolls and got one large and one medium-sized loaf of bread.

Let the loaves rise until doubled – about 1 hr. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes.  The bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped. Brush with the tops with softened margarine or butter.

This bread turned out super soft and moist just as I had hoped for. 

Do you like making bread?  Do you have any bread making tips?