So many people are afraid of baking bread from scratch, but making yeast bread is easy if you know the right steps. The ingredients are simple and as long as you have some very basic tools, your bread wile a success.
Yeast Bread Tip #1- Always read through the recipe thoroughly to make sure that you have all the tools and ingredients necessary to complete the recipe. There is nothing more annoying than getting to the middle of a recipe and realizing that you have to run out to the store and get something thats missing.
Yeast Bread Tip #2- Make sure you prepare your pans as called for in the recipe. Some breads need to be baked in pans that have been brushed with oil or butter, others need to be baked on pans that have been lined with parchment paper. If you skip this step it could be a disaster. I have made bread that had to be sawed out of the pan! Needless to say that particular loaf wasn't fit to be served to company. Lesson learned.
Yeast Bread Tip #3- Always test your yeast in lukewarm liquid 80 -85° F. If the water is too hot, it will kill the yeast and your bread won't rise. This is one big tip that many beginning bread bakers need, because other than having a dead yeast packet, nothing else was wrong. Once you sprinkle your yeast in warm water, let it sit for a few minutes. You should see tiny bubble starting to break on the surface of the water, that will let you know that your yeast is alive and well.
Yeast Bread Tip #4- Test your bread before you pull it out of the oven. A yeast bread that is baked properly should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. The most accurate way to check your bread is with an instant read thermometer. It should register between 190-200°F.
Yeast Bread Tip #5- Remove your breads or rolls from the pans and cool them on wire racks unless your recipe states otherwise. Bread that has cooled completely in the pan has a tendency to be soggy on the bottom from all the steam escaping as the bread cools.
Yeast Bread Tip #6- If you like soft breads and rolls, brush the tops of the loaves with butter as soon as you take them out of the oven. If you want to keep the tops of your loaves crisp, just brush with milk or a mixture of egg yolk and water.
Yeast Bread Tip #7- Store your bread when it is completely cooled. A bread box is best, but bread can be wrapped in plastic or foil for freezer storage.
Bonus Yeast Bread Tip - Approach your bread baking with confidence, the more confident you are, the less hesitant you will be and will bread will turn out great!