I so love the smell of homemade white country bread. There is something extra awesome about the smell of fresh baked bread, and I love how the whole house smells when I am making it. This easy white country bread recipe is simple to make and tastes oh so much better than anything store bought.
The recipe, while very easy, does take a bit of time. The bread must rise twice before baking, so make this when you have extra time to be around while the dough is rising.
While I tend to eat a lot of whole grains, and often eat low carb, this white bread is a guilty pleasure for me. Sometimes I just feel like splurging on some homemade white bread with butter! Another guilty pleasure for me is my Jalapeno Irish Soda Bread.
If you want to stay away from the grains, take a look at my roundup of keto bread recipes. I love those too, but sometimes I just want to have the real thing! Bread has been a staple for a very long time. This history of bread is interesting reading and includes a it about refined flour and the origin of white bread.
How to Make White Country Bread
Start mixing up your bread with 4 cups of flour, 1 1/2 Tablespoons of bread yeast, and 2 Tablespoons of sugar. This recipe uses as little sugar as possible, but it is needed to activate the yeast. That is a benefit of homemade bread though. While you still need sugar to activate the yeast, you can at least control the amount and the source. Many commercial breads are packed full of much more sugar than is needed to get the bread to rise.
In another bowl, microwave 2 Tablespoons of butter and 4 cups of milk in 45 second intervals until the butter has melted. Give it a good stir to assure that it is mixed well.
Mix the liquids with the flour mix and start adding white bread flour one cup at a time, mixing and working it into a dough.
Now comes the fun part! Kneading the white country bread dough. I find kneading dough relaxing. I also love how it gives you a literally hands on feeling to preparing your food. You truly know that your bread is baked from scratch when you have kneaded the dough yourself.
If you have a Kitchen Aid or similar mixer with a bread hook, you can use it to do the kneading. But I always do mine by hand since I enjoy it so much.
To knead the dough, push and pull at it with your hands for eight to ten minutes. Flip it around, push it and punch it. Give it a good work over! The bread dough will be stretchy and elastic when it is ready. From there, oil a bowl and put the dough in it. Cover the bowl and keep it in a location that is not chilled. I like to put it near a sunny window. Let the dough rise for about an hour until it has doubled in size.
Punch the dough down. To do this, you literally give the dough a punch. It will deflate. Divide the bread dough into thirds and place it in three lightly oiled loaf pans. Cover and let it rise again for about an hour.
After it has risen, bake the country bread in the oven at 375 for 35 minutes or until it forms a nice golden brown crust. You can also tell that your bread is done when it has a hollow sound if you tap on it.
I like to serve country white bread warm with softened butter and jam or jelly. It also tastes great with nut butter spreads. For something savory, try mixing tahini with a bit of garlic powder and peanut butter. It is a nice savory spread! Or give some flavored butters a try on it.
You can make variations of this bread by substituting a cup or two of wheat flour, or other flours for part of the bread flour. I like to use quinoa flour at times. It will make the bread denser, but it adds an interesting almost nutty flavor.
Store your country bread in an airtight container. It also freezes well. Here is the recipe card:
- 4 cups flour
- 1 ½ tbsp yeast
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp butter
- 4 cups milk
- 6 cups bread flour
- 1 ½ tbsp salt
- In a large bowl, mix together 4 cups flour, 1 ½ tbsp yeast and 2 tbsp sugar.
- In a second large bow, pour 4 cups of milk and 2 tbsp butter. Put the butter/milk in the microwave and warm in 45 second intervals until the butter has melted.
- Stir together.
- Pour the milk and butter mixture into the flour mixture.
- Mix well.
- Add 1 cup of bread flour at a time, mixing between each.
- Knead the bread for 8-10 minutes until nice and elastic.
- Spread a small amount of oil in a bowl and put the dough in the bowl. Cover and let rise for about an hour or until it has doubled.
- Punch down the dough, and divide into 3 loaf pans. Cover and let rise again, for about an hour.
- Bake at 375 for 35 minutes until golden brown.
- The bread will sound hollow when it is done.
- Allow it to cool before cutting.
Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 110 Total Fat: 2 gg Sodium: 190 mgmg Carbohydrates: 20 gg Fiber: 1.2 gg Sugar: 2.3 gg Protein: 4 gg
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