One of the secrets to great bread? Making sure your yeast still has it.
- 2 tsp yeast
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1/2 cup milk
- 4 tbsp butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- vegetable oil
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine yeast, honey, and water. Let stand for 10 minutes.
Add the milk, butter, flour, and salt. Let the dough hook do its thing for about 10 minutes.
Cover with a damp towel and place in a warm, draft-free spot for 1-2 hours until nearly doubled.
(If your house is drafty and cold, do what I do: preheat the oven to 200º, turn it off, and then let the dough rise inside it.)
Turn out the dough on a lightly floured work surface. Use the heel of your palms to spread it flat. As tightly as possible, roll the dough into a log, tucking in the ends. Place seam-side down inside a lightly oiled bread pan 4" x 8 1/2". Top generously with flour and cover with a dry cloth. Let rise another 1-2 hours, at which time the dough should have risen over the rim of the pan.
Preheat oven to 400º.
Bake bread on the lowest rack for about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool before slicing.