Bread Flour vs. All-Purpose Flour for Easter Bread

Does anyone know if I can use bread flour when making Italian Easter bread? I have Lidia Bastianich's recipe (which I alter to make with anissette like my grandmother used to) but she says use all-purpose (which I am sure my grandmother did too). However, I only have a 5 lb. bag of bread flour - which I have never used before. I don't really know the difference between bread flour or APF and if Easter bread is different from traditional bread making.

Thanks!!

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boulangere
boulangere April 6, 2012

APF has a protein content of about 10%, whereas that of BF is more in the neighborhood of 12%, which is actually substantially more. Lidia Bastianich's Easter Bread contains so much in the way of eggs, yolks, and butter, that even using BF, I think you'll have a bread nearly as tender as it is clearly intended to be. You might want to give the BF a sniff before you use it. If it's been sitting unused for a long time, there is a slight chance it may have gone rancid. The smell of rancid anything is unmistakable, in which case you'll be making a trip to the grocery store anyway. If your flour smells fine, I'd add one more hint not to overknead it. This wants to be a soft, tender bread, so just knead it until all ingredients are incorporated and the dough generally leaves the sides of the bowl. Have a lovely Easter!

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alygator
alygator April 6, 2012

Thank you so much!!

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