This rich bread is a special bread that should only be made for special occasions. For myself, it is one of the many breads I will make for the Thanksgiving festivities. The one cup of butter and the eggs make a delicious bread that is such a treat to serve when the weather is getting cooler.
Yield: 2 loaves.
Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours, 20 minutes
- 1 cup unsalted butter, soft
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cups water, room temperature
- 1 Tbsp (2 pkg. or 1/2 oz.) active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup cream, room temperature
- 2 large eggs plus 2 yolks
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4-1/2 cups bread flour, about
- In large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add water, yeast, and cream. Stir until yeast is dissolved. Mix in eggs, yolks, and salt. Add 3 cups of bread flour and mix well. Slowly add in remaining flour, enough flour to make a dough that follows the spoon around the bowl. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead for 4 minutes, adding more flour as needed until the dough is soft and smooth to the touch. Place dough in large greased bowl. Turn dough over in bowl so that the top is also lightly greased. Cover with clean cloth and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
- Punch down dough. Turn dough out onto lightly floured board and knead for 4 minutes or until the bubbles are out of the bread. Divide dough in half. Shape each half into a loaf of bread. Set each loaf into greased 8 x 4-inch bread pan. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Bake loaf at 375 degrees F for 50 minutes or until the breads are golden brown and sounds hollow when the tops are tapped. Remove loaf from pan and let cool on rack.
Bread Baking Tips:
- Spraying loaves with water while they bake will produce a crispy crust.
- Brush loaves with egg white before baking to produce a shiny crust.
- Brush loaves with milk before baking to produce a dark, shiny crust.
- Brush loaves with butter immediately after baking to produce a soft crust.
- Use bottled water instead of tap water to make your breads. Water softeners and chlorinated public water can sometimes kill the yeast needed to make your bread dough rise.
- Keep yeast stored in an airtight container and in the refrigerator. Heat, moisture, and air kills the yeast and prevents bread dough from rising.
- To keep bread soft, store in a plastic bag.
- Store flour properly to keep it from spoiling.
- Bread flour has a higher amount of gluten than all-purpose flour. This means that bread made with bread flour will rise higher than bread made with all-purpose flour. You can make your own bread flour by adding 1-1/2 teaspoons gluten to each cup of all-purpose flour you use in your bread recipe.
- You can use any type of milk in this recipe: whole milk, skim, low fat, etc. Milk can also be replaced with water and nonfat dry milk.
- Milk can be replaced with soy milk.
- There is a milk to dry milk powder conversion table. Use it to figure out how much dry milk to add to the water when replacing the milk in the recipe.
- Add a cup of raisins or dried cranberries to the bread dough for extra sweetness.