I have been looking for a good recipe for white bread since I got my bread machine back around Christmas time. All the recipes I have found are tasty but don't have that store bought fluffiness that my husband loves. Although I know white bread is not really healthy, my hubby loves it so I have been on a quest to find the perfect recipe. After much trial and error I have finally succeeded. This bread is nice and soft and so much better than store bought. I usually make a second batch of dough while the first is rising so we have enough for about 2 days.
Soft Fluffy White Bread
1 2/3 c. water
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. light olive oil (NOT extra virgin, it is too strong of a flavor for this bread)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
4 c. bread flour (don't try to use all-purpose, it won't work... not enough protein in the flour)
1 heaping Tablespoon Vital Wheat Gluten (I buy this at Wal Mart right near the yeast and flour)
2 tsp. quick rise yeast
Put the ingredients into your bread maker in the order suggested in the manual. Select the DOUGH cycle. When the dough is done, punch it down, divide it in half, form it into loaves and put it into buttered loaf pans. Cover it and let it rise about 45 - 60 minutes. Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Bake bread for 45 minutes. Remove loaves from oven and cover with a kitchen towel for about 10 minutes or until you can easily shake the loaves out of the pans onto a cooling rack. When bread is cool enough to handle, put into plastic bags and tie shut, or you can slice the bread with an electric carving knife at this point and then put it in bags.
* NOTE: For added nutrition, you can substitute 1 c. of whole wheat flour for one cup of the white flour. You will still get a nice soft loaf, but it will not be completely white.
Some people seem to have had problems with this recipe. I'm not sure why because it always works great for me. However, to offer all of you readers an alternative recipe. If you purchase a bag of Bob's Red Mill Brand All Purpose Flour there is a GREAT recipe on there for white bread that is just as soft and fluffy as this one, maybe more! I use it all the time and love it. Just a note, it is intended for a bread machine. However, I make it in my Kitchen Aid mixer and use 1 pkg. of yeast per loaf. Works GREAT! I make 4 loaves at time with no problems. Happy Bread Baking!