Buttermilk Bread

Created 01 Nov 2012 20:19, Updated 06 Nov 2012 15:51

Buttermilk Bread

From Fleischmann's Yeast Best-Ever Breads cookbook

Makes 2 Loaves

(Note: as written, this is the quickest and easiest "yeast" bread ever. Because of the baking soda, it only requires one rise to be spectacular. However, I have been known to give it two rises anyway, so the flavors can deepen, especially if using white whole wheat flour. This only makes it better. David and I enjoy this bread far more with at least half whole wheat flour. Using all regular unbleached flour makes what we call marshmallow bread.)

6 to 6 1/2 c all-purpose flour (use half or all white whole wheat for a heartier texture)
3 T sugar
2 packages rapid-rise or regular yeast
2 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 c buttermilk
1 c water
1/3 c butter or margarine, cut into pieces

In a large bowl, combine 3 cups flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, salt, and baking soda. In a small pan or bowl, heat buttermilk, water, and butter until warm (120-130 degrees); butter does not need to melt. (The mixture will appear curdled.) Stir buttermilk mixture into dry ingredients. Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface or with a mixer with a dough hook until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Cover lightly with a towel or plastic wrap and let rest on floured surface for 10 minutes.

Divide dough in half. Press each half into a rectangle and roll like a jelly roll, pinching seams to seal, or shape into round loaves. Place loaves into lightly greased pans or on baking sheets. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30-45 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped on the bottom. Remove from pans and set on wire racks to cool at least 30 minutes before slicing.

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