Fresh, homemade bread right out of the oven is my weakness. The buttery soft dough that is still warm and melts in my mouth is something I’ve loved since I was a kid.
This is the recipe my mom has been using since I was a kid–as I remember many nights her pulling 4 or 5 loaves out of the oven as we sat down for dinner. It was hard to stop at just one piece! It was time to introduce Cullen to this simple pleasure. He helped me measure and stir, but I think more flour ended up on his shirt and the floor than in the bowl.
After mixing all of the ingredients as much as we could in the bowl, we dumped out the dough onto a floured surface. As you can see, the dough is really lumpy and doesn’t hold together at all.
This is where kneading is important. It is important to spend about 10 minutes kneading. There’s no specific way to knead, but you’ll want to fold the dough on itself and then press everything together. (You can count this as your arm workout of the day.) After about 10 minutes, your dough should be smooth, elastic, and everything will be combined together.
Once the kneading process is finished, we let the dough rise for a couple hours. Then we transferred the dough to two loaf pans and let them rise again. This process does take some time, but with some planning ahead, it isn’t hard. After rising and baking, you will yield a perfectly browned loaf of bread.
Mom’s Homemade Bread
Yield: 2 loaves
1-3/4 cups warm water
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup honey
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
2-1/2 cups bread flour (all-purpose flour also works)
2-1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- In a large mixing bowl, add the water and yeast. Then pour in the oil, honey, and salt and stir combine. Let sit for 5-10 minutes until bubbly on the top.
- Add the flour and stir until well incorporated.
- Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead the dough for 10 minutes.
- Transfer dough back to a bowl, cover with a towel, and let rise until doubled in size (approximately 1.5-2 hours).
- Punch the dough down and then split the dough in half. Form one half into a log-shape and place seam-side down into a greased loaf pan. Repeat for the other half of the dough. (In this blog post, I have more detailed pictures of making homemade bread.)
- Let the dough rise in the pans with a towel on top, so they don’t dry out.
- Once the dough has risen above the top of the pan, preheat the oven to 350*F.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes or until lightly browned on the top.