Bread Making: Basic Dough Recipe

Basic Dough Recipe for White Bread


  • 3 tsp dried breadmaker yeast (check the package)
  • 3 cups of bread making flour (white or half wholemeal and half white)
  • 2T oil or butter
  • 2tsp white or brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 290mls warm water (not too hot)
  • Optional: 1 egg to make a richer dough (think brioche)
Option 1. Making Bread with a Bread Maker

  • Put the ingredients in the order listed into your bread maker and select the dough setting
  • After the ingredients have mixed (my breadmaker beeps at this point) check the consistency of the dough
  • by touching it with the tip of your finger - if your finger comes away with goopy dough on it add a little more flour and if the dough barely makes a dent add a little more warm water (a tablespoon full at a time!)
  • When the dough is ready move onto part 2. 

Option 2. Making Bread by Hand

  • Mix the yeast, sugar and warm water together and put in a warm place for 15 minutes until the mixture is frothy on top
  • Put the rest of the dry ingredients into a bowl and gently pour in the yeast mixture
  • Mix with a spoon until the mixture is too stiff to stir then tip out onto a bench or oven tray dusted with flour
  • Knead for 15 minutes (it will do wonders for your arms!) then place it into an oiled bowl (it will stop the dough sticking), cover with a wet towel and put in your oven on the lowest setting for 20 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size (and stuck to the towel - use a deeper bowl next time!)
  • Get the handle end of a wooden spoon and give the dough a couple stabs. This is called "punching down the dough" and it's very therapeutic, just don't get too carried away. 
  • Move onto part 2. 

Part 2: Shaping the Loaf

Once the dough is mixed it will have been through one lot of kneading and one rising cycle so all
you need to do now is shape the dough and put it through a second rising (proofing).

You can shape the dough to make a pizza, plaited loaf, a filled loaf or individual bread rolls. 

To proof a loaf of bread outside the breadmaker, set the oven to it's lowest setting (50-90% celcius) on a standard bake (fan bake will dry out the dough). Get a new spray bottle and fill it with tap water to spray the surface of the bread so it doesn't dry out.

Proof the bread for 30 minutes then bake in a 180 degrees celcius (350 Farenheit) oven for 20-30 minutes (it will depend on the size and shape of the loaf)

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