English Country Bread

By • April 9, 2010 • 26 Comments


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Author Notes: This recipe comes from my aunt, Ann, who was a superb baker. Today is her birthday and I thought I'd honor her memory by submitting this "receipt", as she used to joke. It makes terrific toast.Lizthechef

Food52 Review: This recipe is amazingly simple -- it's quite possibly the easiest bread I've ever made. Putting the bread dough together takes only 5 minutes. By combining boiling water and cold milk, Lizthechef creates an ideal temperature for the yeast to get to work and the dough rises in less than an hour. The recipe is so fast that I even made it twice to test the difference between active dry yeast and instant dry yeast. I preferred the results with instant, but the active also worked. The bread only takes 25 minutes to bake, but that's plenty of time to fill the house with the wonderful aroma of baking bread. I'd recommend the recipe as an easy way to bake bread when you are short on time. You could whip it up in the morning and have it warm with a little butter and jam for breakfast. - StephanieA&M

Serves 1 loaf

  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups unsifted, unbleached all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cups boiling water.
  • 1/2 cup cold skim milk
  1. Stir dry ingredients together and set aside. Add boiling water to cold milk in a large bowl. Add half the flour mixture and beat well by hand. Stir in the rest of the flour mixture. You will have a stiff batter.
  2. Turned the batter into a greased loaf pan. Cover with a clean towel and allow to raise in a warm place for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  3. Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Remove from pan and allow to cool. Makes about 20 thin slices.

Tags: delicious

Comments (26) Questions (0)

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about 6 hours ago Gary

Nice bread recipe although I too found the mixture more like that of a wet dough than a batter. I let it rise in the bowl for 45 minutes and then stretched and folded it four times to help the gluten develop. Then roughly shaped the loaf and let it rise in the loaf pan. Dusted the top of the risen loaf with flour and baked as directed. Nice flavor and crumb, although I will use regular rather than Kosher salt next time.

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3 months ago Lizthechef

I still shake my head at folks' strong reaction(s) to this recipe. Works for me and glad you liked it, Emily.

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3 months ago Emily

This recipe was fantastic. I followed it exactly and it came out perfect. I added about a 1/2 tablespoon of cinnamon to the bread dough and served with honey brown butter for some great weekday toast. It would also be great with other herbs and spices (I plan to try cardamom and sage next).

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about 1 year ago FoodFanaticToo

This is delicious and exceptionally easy! Thank you for sharing your Aunt's recipe. I've been craving this sort of bread for over two decades -- as long as I've been part of my partner's British family -- and have never found the "right" recipe, until now. The crust is crispy, and the bread itself is substantial and dense, just how I like it. I would not call the unbaked preparation a "batter", as mine was very stiff and I had to knead the last of the flour in. I could not believe how fast this recipe was from start to finish! I think it will become a Standard recipe in our house. Next loaf will be made with whole wheat bread flour...

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about 1 year ago Lizthechef

Thanks so much - people either love this or hate it - never had so many differing opinions on a recipe I submitted.

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about 1 year ago Swimkitty

Fantastic recipe. I made English muffins out of this dough. I felt since I had to griddle cook the muffins that I add around a tablespoon of organic cannola oil to prevent drying. They rose beautifully and were not as 'hole-y' but I was pleased. A huge time savings as well. Oh, I used quick-rise yeast. Thank you.

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about 1 year ago Lizthechef

A great twist to my aunt's recipe - I will have to try this - thanks.

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almost 2 years ago kerrylow

just want to say that i've made this tons of times - with various flour mixtures - and it always works! I usually add some spices/herbs/pesto/sun-dried tomatoes. very flexible!

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almost 2 years ago Lizthechef

Glad you liked it - people either rave about it or hate it.

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about 2 years ago stevea66

This is not a batter bread. Even with vigerous kneeding, the dough would not accept all the flour. This recipe sounded like it should be a spoon bread but was not. Seeing as the yeast had to be added to the dry ingrdients and all the flour couldn't be incorporated, makes me wonder what my bread is going to turn out like. I make bread all the time, that's all we eat, and thought this might be a quick bread. I'll go back to my old recipe.

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about 2 years ago Lillasyster

Bread makes me nervous but I thought to try this recipe out; so simple how could I go wrong, right? I forgot the sugar (my poor staving yeast) but forged ahead anyway. Then I lost the bottom crust (stuck to the bottom of the pan). Despite the mishaps, my daughter declared it "Delicious!".

So Thank You for sharing this simple, forgiving bread recipe.

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about 2 years ago Susan

What a clever recipe! I'm wondering, have you ever tried giving the bread a second rise? How did that turn out?

Thanks for this, Lizthechef!

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about 2 years ago Lizthechef

Nope - give it a shot...

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over 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Hi Liz. My project for the fall and winter is to learn to make bread, and I decided to start with your recipe. I used 2 cups whole wheat flour and one cup of white flour. It was as easy and everyone says it is, and it is really delicious with a nice crumb and a crackly crust. Thanks for a great recipe!!

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over 3 years ago Lizthechef

I hope MyCommunalTable sees your comment - thanks, drbabs!!

Hib_kitchen

over 3 years ago MyCommunalTable

Love this recipe. I have a big bag of dry yeast. How much yeast is in a packet? two or three teaspoon? Have you ever used part whole wheat flour? Saved and I will make it.

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over 3 years ago Lizthechef

Net weight for one packet is 1/4 oz. I have never mixed in ww flour - see my whole wheat bread recipe? Mixing flours in bread recipes can be tricky and I am no expert.

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over 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

LOL--I tried it and it came out fine; I figured the worst thing that would happen is that I'd throw it away. I would have liked a little more sweetness in the WW bread and was thinking to add honey next time--but I'm sure that could throw the whole chemistry off.

Hib_kitchen

over 3 years ago MyCommunalTable

Hey thanks, Liz and Drbabs! I am going to be a total radical and make this with partial whole wheat flour and bread flour, then use rice milk because of my sons allergies. I will let you know how it turns out. I do know that honey placed in the yeast and water in my pizza dough recipe is suppose to help feed the yeast. We will see. Looks like a great recipe. Good foundation to start with. I love the idea of the hot water and cold milk. I will let you all know

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over 3 years ago Lizthechef

This is an easy recipe for a first-time bread-baker. Would make a great sandwich for this week's theme...

Kbh-canal

over 3 years ago matthewddsg

I baked this today; it was officially my first successful load of bread. Thanks so much the easy and tasty recipe!

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over 3 years ago Lizthechef

Thank you for making my day, no, my weekend!!

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almost 4 years ago lapadia

Just made this recipe; I love playing with yeast dough, have made many loaves of bread but have never seen a bread recipe that goes this fast...I love it! I used instant yeast, 1/2 cup of King Arthurs white whole wheat and mixed in 1/3 cup dry powdered milk in place of the sugar and for the extra bit of flavor it gives. Love the texture and flavor, can't wait to make some toast with it, this is a recipe I will go to when pressed for time. Thanks for sharing your aunt's bread legacy!

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almost 4 years ago Lizthechef

Thanks - I am thinking about my sweet aunt, having her best fruit tart recipe at the ready, and you warmed my heart. Keep your eyes peeled for her fruit tart - thanks, Liz

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about 4 years ago Lizthechef

Thank you for all your effort(s), Stephanie. Not much of a baker, even I can manage this one!

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about 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I'm definitely trying this one!! ;o)