Milk and Honey Bread

4 Mar

I went speed dating this week. I learned a few things.

1. 90% of guys that go to speed dating work in IT.

2. Spending an hour having a series of 5 minutes conversations is surprisingly exhausting.

3. There is going to be one guy who is a total jerk. This one accused me of being nervous and/or boring and then made a creepy misogynistic comment to me. I wasn’t amused. I’m also 99% certain he didn’t actually fit into the age range set for the event.

4. Attractive and normal guys do actually go to speed dating! I met quite a few of them.

5. But there will also be one guy who seems to be like Raj from the Big Bang Theory, in that he seems unable to speak when around women. Only this guy has alcohol and he STILL isn’t talking. It makes the 5 minutes a little awkward.

But I had a lot of fun. There was something nice about being in a room with a bunch of guys you already knew were interested in chatting and potentially going out on dates. Lessens the pressures about rejection and all that.

And you know, dating is a lot like making bread. You have to get things juuuust right or you might kill your chances (or your yeast). But when it does work out, you are rewarded with delicious smelling bread (or boyfriend…).

Okay, that was a lame segue. Let’s move on.

This weekend, make some bread. I ate most of this loaf smeared with butter and honey, but it would also make extra yummy sandwiches, or works as just a nice slice of bread with dinner.

I have a dough hook, but sometimes I just like to do things the hard way, so I kneaded this loaf by hand. It was very satisfying, and I counted it as my arm workout for the day.

Milk and Honey Bread
Adapted from Twinks over at Tasty Kitchen

Makes 1 loaf

1 Tbsp butter
1 ¼ cup milk
1 Tbsp honey
3 cups bread flour (*see note below)
1 tsp active dry yeast
¾ tsp salt

*I don’t ever buy bread flour. Instead, I just always buy all-purpose flour, but I have a small jar of gluten flour in the pantry as well. To make bread flour, you just replace 1 Tbsp in every cup of all-purpose flour with 1 Tbsp of gluten flour.
So for this recipe, you would measure out 3 cups of all-purpose flour into a bowl. Now put 3 Tbsp of that flour back in the bin, and add 3 Tbsp of gluten flour to your bowl. Mix it together and you have bread flour!

In a small sauce pan, heat milk, honey and butter until butter has melted, stirring to combine. Set aside and let cool until the liquid feels neither hot nor cold to the touch.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine 2 cups of flour and salt. Once the milk has cooled enough, sprinkle yeast over the liquid and let sit for a few minutes, then stir gently.

Add milk mixture to the flour, and using an electric mixer, or by hand if you are feeling particularly strong today, mix until smooth.

If you are mixing by hand, work in the remaining cup of flour and then turn dough out onto a floured surface to knead for 10 minutes. If you are using an electric mixer that has a dough hook, add ½ cup of remaining flour, mix for a few minutes, and then switch over to the dough hook and add the remaining ½ cup of flour. Knead with hook for 8-10 minutes on low speed.

Place dough in an oiled bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a draft-free until doubled in size, about 1 hour to 1 ½ hours.

Now take out your aggression on that dough and punch out the air. Form dough into a loaf shape and place in a greased 9×5 loaf pan. Allow the dough to rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes.


3 Responses to “Milk and Honey Bread”

  1. Cheeky Chops March 7, 2011 at 6:11 pm #

    Feel a bit odd leaving a comment about a post which refers to gluten flour when I have a gluten-free diet, but your post was so funny and the milk and honey bread sounds like a good combination! I will have to try to get it to work in a gluten-free world!

  2. Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) June 3, 2011 at 7:01 pm #

    This looks like an easy bread recipe — just what I’m looking for!

  3. Frieda June 8, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    Beautiful! (hello from TK!) Kneading bread is therapeutic, isn’t it? It’s worthwhile and the smell beats a scented candle any day!

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