We'll start by proofing the yeast in the mixer bowl.
Add the sugar to the bowl
Add the warm water (I just use tap water) to the bowl. The water should be warm to the touch, about 110 - 115°F.
Add the yeast to the bowl.
Whisk the mix up with a fork.
Let the mix sit for about 5 minutes.
While you're letting the yeast proof, prep the measuring cup with 3 cups
cold water. This is also a good time to do any other necessary
prep work (such as setting up the scale or mixer).
Add remaining ingredients and start mixer
Now we add the remaining ingredients.
Put the bowl on the scale, and zero or tare the scale
Add the flour
Add the salt
Add about 1-1/2 cups of the water
Add the 1/4 cup of oil or butter
Time to start the mixer.
Put the bowl into the mixer
Attach the dough hook
Raise the bowl and lock it into place
Turn the mixer onto its lowest setting
Start the timer
Mix the dough
The dough should mix for about 18 minutes.
As the dough mixes, evaluate it every minute or two. You'll need to adjust it several times during the mixing process.
Turn the mixer off first whenever you reach in to do anything to the dough!
Sometimes you'll need to push the dough down the hook.
Sometimes you'll need to push over a column of dough that's grown up the side of the bowl.
You'll need to add water to get to the right consistency, add a little at a time.
There should be a tackiness to the dough.
At the end, the dough should be one blob that sticks together.
Remove the bowl from the mixer and the hook from the dough.
Roll dough up into a ball.
Lightly cover ball in oil.
Put dough back into bowl.
Cover the bowl.
Wait for dough to at least double in size, usually between 1 and 2 hours.
Lightly oil the loaf pans
Punch the dough down, expelling all of the gas that's built up inside.
Split dough in half, and place one half in each loaf pan.
Let it rise until it's at least doubled, 1-2 hours.
Start oven preheating to 375°F about 15 minutes before doubling is done.
Slash an X into the top of each loaf with a sharp knife.
Put both loaves into a preheated 375°F oven.
Bake for about 25 minutes, until done. I usually start checking after 20 minutes.
When done, take out and dump out of loaf pans onto wire rack to cool.
If the bread doesn't pop right out of the pan, you can loosen the sides with a butter knife inserted between the bread and the pan.
Ideally, let loaves cool for at least an hour before slicing. The baking process finishes as the loaves cool.
Signs of doneness
Firmess of top
A hollow sound when thumped
I use 3 cups cold rather than warm water because the mixer can heat
up the dough.
Sometimes, it's not possible to wait for it to cool.
You can mix in other flours, but other flours don't rise as well
as white bread or all-purpose flour. So you'll need to play
around with the ratio of flours. You can also up the amount of
Instead of regular loaves, you can make other shapes.
If you line cookie sheets with parchment paper, you can
lay out cylinders for baguettes or roll the dough into
small balls for rolls. Remember to slash a line in the
top before you put them into the oven.