Top Tips For Baking The Perfect Bread

Hey everyone πŸ™‚ Im really happy to be sharing with you the first post from my Baking Guides series. All of you guys who have been following me for a while know how much I love making fresh bread πŸ™‚ It’s one of my favourite things to do and gives me the most satisfaction. I mean seriously, when you slice into a loaf of bread you’ve just made and see the cooked inside fluffiness, there’s nothing that compares to that feeling of accomplishment! πŸ™‚ 

Over the years, I’ve picked up a few tricks for making bread and have managed to perfect making lots of different breads achieving great results every time πŸ™‚ 

I really want everyone to know just how simple it is to make fresh bread at home. It really is. 

Im going to keep adding new tips that I pick up but here are a few of my favourites and what I think is most important:

  1. Using the correct yeast. Most bakeries and bread makers use fresh yeast or active dry yeast. When I first wanted to learn making bread, I tried using active dry yeast but I just couldn’t get my breads to work out. Ever since I’ve started using instant/fast acting yeast, my breads have been spot on every time. I advise everyone to always use instant yeast no matter what bread you are making. This guarantees that your bread will rise and cook nicely.
  2. Consistency of the dough. One of the first things I learned about bread is making sure that the dough has alot of moisture. Depending on what type of bread you’re making, some are more moist than others but all bread dough should have alot of water. The wetter the dough is the better it rises and becomes fluffy. Another key ingredient is salt. Make sure to add enough salt because there’s nothing worse than a bland piece of bread πŸ™‚
  3. Kneading. This is super important for breads because it develops the gluten making breads cook properly throughout and giving it a nice chewy texture without being doughy. A great rule of thumb is to knead a minimum of 5 minutes with a dough hook on a mixer and 10 minutes by hand.
  4. Proper rising and proofing. Another key step to making sure the dough cooks properly is to make sure it rises well and giving it time to develop. I like to rise my doughs then shape and let them proof (rise again) overnight in the fridge. This way they rise slowly and give an overall better flavour and texture.
  5. Slice slits on top. Using a serrated knife or even sharp scissors, score slits across the tops of your doughs, even if the recipe doesn’t call for it. (Unless you’re making fluffy milk/egg rolls). This ensures the bread to cook all the way through not leaving doughy centres.
  6. Cook at high heat. Make sure your oven is preheated well at a high temperature. The bread needs to go directly into a very hot oven.
  7. Ice cube tray. This is a great trick to make sure your bread rises in the oven. Place an empty baking tray at the bottom of the oven. Put your dough inside and just before closing the oven door, place some ice cubes onto the baking tray. This creates steam and gives the bread a lovely, moist environment to bake in.
  8. Make sure the bread is cooked. No matter how much time it takes, make sure your bread is cooked all the way through. To know when it’s ready, tap your finger on the bottom of the bread. It should sound hollow. If it doesn’t then let it cook a bit longer.
  9. Cool on wire rack. This is important to make sure your bread doesn’t become soggy. Once your bread is done, don’t leave it on the baking tray. Remove and place onto a wire rack to cool.
  10. Be confident. Have faith that your going to make the best bread. Don’t doubt yourself, it’s alot easier than you think πŸ™‚

There are so many types of breads you can make. The choices are limitless!

White or brown floured. Buns or rolls. Loaves or round breads. πŸ™‚

Be creative! Add anything you like into your breads like nuts or spices.

Just have fun!

Ok I have way too many bread pictures to upload! Another post, another time πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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33 thoughts on “Top Tips For Baking The Perfect Bread

  1. Linda, I think you are my hero ! The only bread I can make is Irish soda bread ! All my other attempts have failed me…but, I was using dry active yeast !!! So now I am going to track down some instant/fast acting yeast, and give your recipe a go πŸ™‚ I have to conquer making bread !!!
    Have a lovely day, and thank you πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohh Lynne please do try!! I swear once you’ve nailed making bread you’re going to find yourself making it all the time!! πŸ™‚ I used to also use dry active yeast but couldn’t figure out how to make it work, even to this day when I see a recipe that calls for yeast and says you can use dry active, I just ignore that and use instant yeast. Works every single time with all recipes πŸ™‚ its called either instant yeast or fast active or even rapid rise. If you’re confused, read the ingredients and you’ll notice it contains yeast as well as emulsifier which is what makes it instant, not needing to be proofed. Do let me know how your bread turns out πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ God bless xx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A great summation of tips for bread making. It’s great that you’ve mastered the yeast beast πŸ™‚ Do you find yourself using bread flour or all purpose flour? I’ve used wheat flour before, but haven’t been too happy with the results. My bread making skills are hit or miss, so this will definitely come in handy when I bake bread for our Thanksgiving feast. Thanks πŸ™‚ I like the ice cube tip.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh do let me know how your breads turn out. It’s really very simple when you get the hang of it, after getting the right yeast you’re pretty much good to go πŸ™‚ I’ve actually used both types of flours with great results but since the all purpose flour I get here has more gluten than imported flours, I just use all purpose flour with no issues. Strong white bread flour does yield a stronger bread like texture so if you’re comfortable with that then go with it. Both flours are okay with me πŸ™‚ The ice cube trick works a treat, especially for the crust πŸ˜‰

      Like

  3. Thank you Linda….is there a favorite recipe that you like to use for rolls? I’ve made a few different recipes, but you seem to know a lot about baking, so I’m sure you have a favorite? The buns in the tin foil look real good

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Loretta I hop you are well πŸ™‚ yes I do have some favourites, over the years I’ve managed to get some good experience in yeast based goods, this here is one of the best soft, large and extra fluffy dinner rolls AND you can make them in only an hour πŸ™‚ I also have a recipe for basic bread buns if you like which are the ones in the tin foil that I made those garlic cheese breads out of? πŸ™‚

      https://thedutchbaker.wordpress.com/2016/09/28/one-hour-large-and-fluffy-dinner-rolls/

      Liked by 1 person

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