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Best Bread Machine Bread
April 07, 2008

This is an excellent starter recipe. I make a few alterations though, as my family likes whole wheat... Here's my exact recipe. This makes a 2-lb loaf. 1-1/3 cups warm water (about 115°) 3.5 tsp bread machine yeast 1/4 cup sugar 1/3 cup oil 2 cups bread flour (essential to be bread flour!) 2 cups whole wheat flour 2 tbls gluten (or 1 tbls per cup of ww flour) 2 tsp salt 1/4 cup dry milk powder (makes the crust flaky) Follow the directions in the original recipe. I like to bake mine inthe oven however. I find that the dough cycle is actually too long on my machine if you use bread machine yeast (1.5 hours), because the end of it is a rise cycle, which I want done in my bread pan. The reason for this is that bread machine yeast actually cuts out the need for a second rise. So, after the final pulse cycle (you'll have to pay attention to your machine to see when this is -- mine is at 50 minutes into the dough cycle), take it out, shape it into your loaf and place it your pan to rise for 30 minutes. Then, bake it at 350° for about 25 minutes. Bread should be brown on top, not just golden. Let the loaf cool completely before cutting! I also like to smear the crust with butter to keep it soft, but if you like really crusty crust, then don't do that. I've tried many recipes, and this is by far the best basic bread recipe I've found. It's perfect for sandwiches, french toast, or anything else you'd use store-bought bread for.

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