EASY MAKING BREAD AT HOME
Homemade bread is delicious and fresh, and while the preparation process is lengthy, it's not nearly as difficult as most people think. As a bonus, all the ingredients you need are incredibly inexpensive. Making bread at home can be time consuming, but if you plan ahead, you and your family can have nutritious, home-baked bread all the time. The following procedure can be used with virtually any yeast bread recipe.
Step 1: Scaling
Weigh out your ingredients, don't measure by volume. Think of baking as chemistry. The ingredients all react to one another and need fairly exact measurements to work.
Step 2: Mixing
The best thing about yeast breads is that you only have one mixing step: throw it all in a bowl and mix with a bread hook or by hand.
Step 3: Fermentation
Lightly grease a large bowl and set your dough inside. Cover with plastic wrap and store somewhere slightly above room temperature (on top of an in-use oven or near a radiator) for at least an hour or until the dough appears to have doubled in size.
Step 4: Punching
Don't worry, it's not as violent as it sounds! Punching just means to work the dough a little to release CO2 and relax the gluten.
Step 5: Dividing
This step is only used whhen you to make more than one loaf. If that's the case, split your dough into equal portions It's advisable to weigh them to make sure the baking times are exactly the same.
Step 6: Rounding
Gently round your dough by forcing the outsides of the ball into the center until you have a stretched, smooth surface on the top.
Step 7: Benching
Benching is another form of fermentation. Allow your dough to rest on the counter under a layer of plastic wrap or a towel for 10-15 minutes.
Step 8: Panning
Gently form your dough into the desired shape and place it on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
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