Making bread can be intimidating but it’s really not THAT complicated as long a you follow the instructions. Plus there is such gratification that comes from taking your homemade bread out of the oven. Also don’t even get me started on the amazing smell that it will fill your house with. MMmmmm just to think about it, I’m seriously melting.
I hope you’ll enjoy this basic recipe. It’s actually one of the easiest bread recipe I’ve made so far and the result is a hit every time! You only need a few basic ingredient that you can find anywhere and some upper body strength for the kneading. Most bread recipes I will be posting are all to be made by hand without a bread machine like in the good old days 😉 It’s after making your first bread that you realize how comfortable we are these days to have everything so easily accessible and worry free. I think we should all be very grateful for what we have and to live in such comfortable era…
– INGREDIENTS –
1 tablespoon of active dry yeast
1/2 cup of warm water (100F)
2 1/2 tablespoon of sugar
1 tablespoon of salt
1 cup of milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
4 1/4 cup of wholewheat bread flour**
1- In a big mixing bowl, mix in the yeast, warm water and sugar together and let it stand for 15 minutes so the yeast has the time to bubble.
2- Add the milk, eggs, salt and 1 cup of flour to the yeast mixture and mix well together before adding the remaining flour one cup at the time. If you have an electric mixer, I suggest you start with the regular whipping attachment and you transfer to the dough attachment when you’re adding the remaining flour till it form a ball that clean the side of the bowl.
3- transfer your ball of dough on a lightly floured surface (and this is where you will need some upper body strength) knead the dough for a 10 big minutes. I know it might sound like a lot but it’s so worth it. Try not to cheap out on the kneading because that’s what make your bread more puffy and tasty. As the time will pass, you’ll feel the dough’s texture changing a bit and by the last 2 minutes, it will be a lot easier to knead it because of all the air pockets you added by working the dough.
4- When that is done, place the ball of dough in another big mixing bowl that you previously greased. Cover the bowl with a warm, humid and clean white rag and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.
5- When the dough doubled in size, punch it to remove the excess air and form another ball with it. Once the ball is formed, split it in half then split each balls in 3. In the end you should have in front of you 6 mini balls of dough. Take each balls and roll them to end up to do 6 ropes of approximately 12inches.
Take 3 ropes and pinch the end to merge them together before braiding them. Tuck each end under the bread and transfer it to a baking sheet covered in semolina flour like the photo below. Cover again with a warm humid rag and let rise again for 1 hour.
6- When the breads doubles in size again, brush them with egg white and add toasted sesame seed on the top as decoration. Put the breads the oven that you previously heated at 350 for 25 to 30 minutes, transfer on a cooling rack when it’s done and ENJOY! 🙂
…Mine took 26 minutes exactly if you’re wondering.
** You could have used regular all purpose flour (white or wholewheat) but I always prefer the result of the bread when we used the bread flour. But I understand it’s not everybody who has some bread flour laying around so regular works fine too. Maybe try to knead the dough 2 minutes more when using regular flour.