The last time I made this (read it here) I wasn’t happy with how it turned out. Basically it didn’t rise as I thought it should and it came out pretty dense. Which, as I think I mentioned before, is a problem I’ve had regarding homemade sandwich bread. It is dense which leads it to be considered “hard”. And it doesn’t make the greatest bread for a sandwich.
I’m not sure what happened the first go around. I still think it had to do with the yeast. I used the allotted amount from my jar of dry active yeast but it never seemed to “take off” and it never really rose.
This time I decided to use instant yeast and I left it in the bowl for quite awhile to make sure it got going and was bubbling. It did rise very well the first time and I wound up moving it to the bread pan after about one hour and 45 minutes. I had planned to let it go for two but after peaking, decided to move it over. The second rise happened pretty well also, at least from the time it took to reach the “end” (how far above the rim of the pan). It still came out as a smaller loaf but you do use a small loaf pan. Hard to get it to be “big” when it is in a small pan.
The end result was that it was much better not was not as dense. I won’t call it. Super soft but it was much better and I was told that it was softer. Success right there. And, I think you could see it in the loaf. I understand it’s hard for you reading this to compare, but I really felt like you could see the difference with this loaf compared to the first.
As I sit here and think about everything I did, I still cut the recipe in half as we don’t use that much bread on a weekly basis and it will go bad (mold) around the one week mark. However, I used an entire packet of instant yeast which is twice as much as I needed for one loaf. Maybe that is why it did so well with the rise, etc. There was plenty of yeast to make it go.
I’ll have to test this theory out this weekend. I need to make some more bread and maybe I’ll make a full batch (two loaves) and see how the rise goes. Either way, I do recommend this recipe.