In my quest to make most of our bread from scratch I have given both the bread machine and our local library a workout. I went a bit overboard and requested maybe 25 or so titles on bread machines. Some were painfully dated (the early 90′s) and some were just badly written. A few have stood out though and into that list would go Bread Machines For Dummies.
It pains me every time I write something complimentary about Dummies books, but sigh, most of them are decently written. I just have to shut up the inner snob that lingers in me! I’ll admit the book is very through, it covers everything an at home bread machine baker could want to know. From the history of bread machines (I learned something new!), to flours. to the liquids, even buying a machine, the book covers it. The only downside is it downplays whole wheat. Which is understandable as the book would be for the masses. But I still have a few pounds of white flour to use up and I wanted a loaf of bread to go with dinner…..
I tried out the Good Old American Sandwich Bread recipe on page 92 and made the 1½ lb loaf. I chose it as the recipe didn’t call for eggs. The only gripe I have is the books use of the term “oatmeal”. To me “oatmeal” refers to cooked oats. It called for 2 Tablespoons oatmeal. Later on while reading the dry ingredient section I realize they are using “oatmeal” where it should be “oats”. Sigh. I have never seen uncooked oats referred to as oatmeal, it struck me as odd. Well, it all turned out in the end as my dough was very dry and needed more liquid anyways. So if the recipe calls for oatmeal in the book be wary!
The bread was quite tasty. Very light and airy, easily sliced. It would make a fine sandwich loaf!
Good Old American Sandwich Bread (Bread Machine)
- 2/3 cup milk, room temperature
- 1/3 cup water, room temperature
- 2 Tbsp sunflower or canola oil
- 1½ tsp fine sea salt or kosher salt
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp cooked oatmeal (see below)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2¼ tsp active yeast
To make the oatmeal, add ¼ cup boiling water to 2 Tablespoons old-fashioned oats in a small bowl. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Add the oats to the bread pan and everything else in order listed.
Select white bread, 1½ lb loaf size and medium crust setting and start. During the first kneading watch the dough, add more warm water as needed, a Tablespoon at a time, if the dough is too dry.
After baking has finished, remove from the machine and knock out onto a cooling rack. Let fully cool, at least an hour, before slicing (the bread finishes setting up). Store wrapped.
Makes one 1½ lb loaf.