When I was a kid, I remember my dad buying milk bread which was little sweet in taste and tasted awesome with clarified butter and tea. We don’t get that bread here so I decided to make it. I made some changes to in traditional white bread recipe but it came out as expected.
3 1/4 Cups all purpose flour/maida
2 1/4 Tsp active dry yeast or one sachet of active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water(microwave for 25-30 seconds)
1 cup warm milk
5-6 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp oil/melted butter/olive oil
1 1/2 tsp salt.
In a bowl take water, add 2 Tsp sugar and microwave for 25-30 seconds. Check the temperature of water by putting your finger (do not forget to wash your hands before putting finger in the water :P). Water should be lukewarm not hot. Add dry yeast, stir gently and keep aside for approximately 10 minutes to activate the yeast and the mixture will be frothy and milky.
In a bowl mix maida, salt , remaining sugar and butter. Now add activated yeast mixture, mix gently. Add warm milk (or it should be at room tempurature) little by little till everything comes together. Now transfer the dough on cleaned kitchen top and dust little flour and knead the dough till it soft and smooth. It will take about 10-12 minutes.
Grease a bowl with oil/butter, place the dough and cover with damp cloth or cling wrap and set aside in a warm place for at least 1 hour. After one hour dough will be double in size (it’s called proofing). Mean while grease the bread pan with oil/butter and dust with flour. Punch the dough and again knead it for another 8-10 minutes(the more you knead, bread will be soft). Form the dough into loaves, place it in greased bread pan, cover again with damp cloth or cling wrap and set aside for 30-35 minutes. After suggested time the dough will be double in the size.
Preheat oven at 356F/180C for 10 minutes.
Bake the bread for 30-35 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
1) Do not forget to add sugar in the water.
2) Warm or lukewarm means the temp should be less than 100 C or when you put your finger in water, it should feel soothing not burning. if the water is too hot it will kill the yeast and the bread will be hard and dense.
3)There are different types of yeast like instant east, active dry yeast and bakers yeast. Each has some differences in measurements, proofing.
4) If the weather is cold, keep dough in warm place.
5) For even cooking, one can change the side up down for even cooking.
6) After removing from the oven , brush the top with oil, it will make the top shine and soft crust after cooling down.
7) Cut the slices with a sharp knife only after the loaf cools completely.
Do not forget to read all the details about bread baking on the http://www.thesecretingredient.in/spilled-beans/basic-steps-to-bake-a-perfect-bread-loaf/ and http://www.thesecretingredient.in/spilled-beans/all-you-ever-wanted-to-know-about-yeast/ where my dear friend Anshu gave all the tips and trick about yeast, baking the bread and avoid the mistakes.