I have tried recipes from the back of different flour bags, I have tried different recipes from so many different cookbooks, and recipes from friends, and friends of friends. I have tried myself to tweak so many of them with a "little more of this and a little less of that" with sometimes bits of success but mostly this is met with failure, as when baking, the rule of thumb is suppose to be that, you need to follow a baking recipe to the tee for a reason!
However, after years of flailing and floundering between this recipe and that one, I have come across the perfect compromise. The recipe is actually one that I have pieced together from two. One of them happens to be an "ole fave" of our little family, that has worked for us for a while now, and a newer one that I began trying because of the time that the other one was taking when our bread maker decided to die a not so quiet death. Actually when we used it for the last time, it was practically screeching and squealing and thumping across the counter. So, it did us well for a while.
But, in the many different tries of finding the perfect bread recipe, there are a a few tips I have found that each successful recipe should have.
- Newer Yeast, make sure it proofs. I buy yeast in bulk and keep it in the freezer.
- New Eggs, we get Farm Fresh Ones, but the Newer the Better.
- Fresher Flour, believe it or not, flour does go stale.
- Butter, margarine will work too.
Later today, I will be making a fresh batch of bread, and hopefully I will remember to take pictures of the process to share...