My current good-enough white loaf recipe
This recipe won’t produce anything award-winning, but when I feel like baking this will create a decent loaf without too much faff.
|Strong white bread flour||100%||500 g|
|Tepid water||60%||300 g|
|A sachet of dried yeast||1.4%||7 g|
|Fine salt||2%||10 g|
|Olive oil||2%||10 ml|
You’ll also need extra flour for kneading, extra olive oil for coating whatever you put your dough in while it rises, and any loaf toppings (a light dusting of flour, poppy seeds, etc).
- Chuck everything into a stand mixer set up with a dough hook and knead on a medium speed for two minutes. Bump the speed up a notch and knead for an additional three minutes.
- Take the dough out, lightly oil the stand mixer bowl, and plop the dough back in. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and let the dough rise until it has doubled in size.
- Empty the bowl onto a lightly-dusted surface and knead the dough for around a minute.
- Shape the dough as required (I put mine in a lightly-floured loaf tin). Cover with a tea towel and let it prove until it has doubled in size (or thereabout).
- During the proofing, whack the oven on as high it’ll go and place a pizza stone (if you have one) and an empty loaf tin into the middle of the oven.
- When the dough is ready to be baked, add your toppings and make a few cuts on the top with a bread knife.
- Working quickly, place your dough onto the pizza stone and pour some boiling water into the empty loaf tin. Close the oven and let the bread cook for 10 minutes before turning the oven temperature down to 180 °C and cooking for another 35 minutes.
- Transfer the loaf to a wire rack to cool.
- I sometimes do the initial rise overnight in the fridge. Instead of covering the bowl with a towel, use cling film.
- It’s on my list of things to try, but you can replace the whole rising-and-proofing part with something a little more involved.