This straightforward loaf is the white bread of your dreams, and its fluffy slices make for evenly browned toast. The 1/3-cup of sugar makes this mildly sweet and perfect for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but you can cut it down to 2 tablespoons.
You do need some sugar, however, to feed the yeast and ensure a lofty rise. This recipe makes up to two loaves. The resulting loaf has a divine crumb and golden, soft crust.
- 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
- 2 tsp salt
- 7g sachet fast-action yeast
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 300ml water
- Mix 500g strong white flour, 2 tsp salt and a 7g sachet of fast-action yeast in a large bowl.
- Make a well in the center, then add 3 tbsp olive oil and 300ml water, and mix well. If the dough seems a little stiff, add another 1-2 tbsp water and mix well.
- Tip onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for around 10 mins.
- Once the dough is satin-smooth, place it in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film. Leave to rise for 1 hour until doubled in size or place in the fridge overnight.
- Line a baking tray with baking parchment. Knock back the dough (punch the air out and pull the dough in on itself) then gently mold the dough into a ball.
- Place it on the baking parchment to prove for a further hour until doubled in size.
- Heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7.
- Dust the loaf with some extra flour and cut across about 6cm long into the top of the loaf with a sharp knife.
- Bake for 25-30 mins until golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped underneath. Cool on a wire rack.