Buttermilk Bread


This bread took me a few tries to make and it may be because I tweaked the recipe. (Doubled the buttermilk and halved the water.) The first loaf was a bit small and squished looking compared to the Brioche I had made earlier, which I found rather perplexing because the Brioche both looked and tasted amazing.

And so I took the remaining dough (the equivalent of three loaves) and put it into the same bread pan I’d used to make the Brioche. I let it rise while Sis made cupcakes and tuna casserole.

While Sis was pouring cupcake batter into tins, I heard her yell, Your bread is overflowing. Sure enough, it was pouring out of the bread pan and spilling onto the stove. Drat. So I cleaned off the stove where the dough had dripped and pooled, and I punched the dough back down in order to let it rise one more time. This time the bread successfully raised. Phew!

Because of the problems I had when making it, I’m listing the recipe as is in Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day, AKA my bread recipe bible.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 c. lukewarm water
  • 1 c. buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 T. instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 T. Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 T. sugar
  • 6 1/2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • Butter for greasing the pan

Directions:

  1. Mix the yeast, salt, sugar, water and buttermilk in a mixing bowl.
  2. Mix in flour with a spoon, food processor or heavy-duty stand mixer.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest at room temperature until the dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approximately two hours.
  4. The dough can be used immediately after the initial rise or refrigerated in a lidded container and used within 7 days.
  5. When you’re ready to bake, dust the surface of the dough with flour and cut off a hunk of dough approximately the size of large orange or grapefruit. Dust the chunk of dough with flour and quickly shape the dough into a ball. Stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the dough a quarter of a turn. Drop into the prepared loaf pan, you want the pan to be more than half full, allowing to rest and rise for one hour and 40 minutes.
  6. Place an empty broiling pan on the rack below the stone. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Set the loaf pan on a rack near the center of the oven and quickly pour 1 cup of hot tap water into the broiling pan beneath the stone. Close the oven door as quick as possible. Bake for about 45 minutes, until deeply golden brown.
  8. Remove from the pan. Cool before cutting or eating.

This bread is perfect for a grilled cheese sandwich or tuna melt.

Recipe rating:

For me, this recipe made one and a half loaves of bread, though it’s supposed to make four! I doubled the buttermilk in the recipe and was afraid that move would mess with taste of the bread, but it wasn’t the least bit pungent in taste. I would definitely make this bread recipe again.

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