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There is something about the feel of bread dough in my hands that is soothing, and centers me.  And what can beat the smell of freshly baked bread in the kitchen?

After years of experimenting, I have finally found a recipe that seems pretty “idiot proof,” which means I can make it even on my less-than-stellar days!   A foolproof way to check the loaves after baking is to insert an instant-read thermometer in the heel.  If it reaches 185 degrees, the bread is done!

Becca’s Basic Bread

Combine:

2 1/4 Cups Potato Water or 2 1/4 cups Water and 1/3 cup Potato Pearls

3 Tbs. Yeast

1/2 Cup Honey or Sugar

1/3 Cup Oil

3 Tbs. Gluten flour

2 Tbs.  Dough Enhancer

3 cups Whole Wheat or Whole Grain flour.

Let sponge for 3-5 minutes. Then add:

1 Tbs. Salt

2-4 cups flour.  (Whole grain or All-purpose)

Knead for 4-6 minutes.  Let rise.  Form into loaves.  Let rise again until double.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until done.  This recipe can also be used for any recipe calling for basic bread dough.

 

Sweet Dough

Combine:

2 Cups Very warm water

1 Cup evaporated milk

2 tsp. salt

1/8 Cup sugar or honey

1/4 Cup oil

1 tbsp. instant yeast

1 Cup flour

Allow to sponge for about 5 minutes.  Then add: 5-6 Cups flour.

Use this recipe for sweet breads such as cinnamon rolls, monkey bread, etc.  .  Bake most sweet breads at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

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