Soft Potato bread
Soft Potato bread is tender, moist and airy. It is more tender and has a finer texture than regular white bread because the addition of potato reduces gluten formation of wheat flour, which is what makes white bread chewy. The smell and taste of freshly baked potato bread are pleasant and comforting. It doesn’t spoil as fast as most other types of bread and remains moist longer.
This recipe is simple and not easy to mess up (very forgiving), and the pillowy soft outcome is totally worth the effort. Potato bread is rich in fibre etc. Use the starch-rich water from boiling the potatoes to make the bread in order to enrich it further.
It is arguably the best type of bread for toast. When toasted, there is a balance of a crunchy outside and a soft chewy inside. Not the tear-your-mouth kind of crunchy toast neither is it the type of toast that tears when you are trying to spread your butter on it. It lets the butter seep right into the core of the bread. Ok, I love butter toast.
This recipe can be used for bread rolls or pizza dough. You can even make the dinner rolls savoury by adding finely chopped spring onions and a little rosemary and serve it with soup e.g. Chicken pepper soup, Sweetcorn egg drop soup and Oxtail pepper soup.
To make Soft Potato Bread
2/3 cup mashed irish potato (2-3 potatoes) 4 1/2 cups flour 2 teaspoons active dry yeast 1 tablespoon sugar 2 teaspoons salt 1/4 cup dry milk powder 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water (potato water) 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
Peel potatoes, cut into chunks and place in a small pot.
Add enough water to just cover it.
Boil over high heat till potato is soft. Drain, reserving the cooking water. You can also use the microwave to cook the potatoes.
Leave to cool down enough to handle and dry out a bit.
Mash potato using a potato masher, fork or ricer, making sure there are no lumps.
Hand mixing of Soft Potato Bread
In a large bowl, combine flour, yeast, sugar, salt and milk powder. Stir well.
Measure out 2/3 cup mashed potato and add to the flour.
Add lukewarm potato cooking water and vegetable oil.
Mix to form a dough.
Knead the dough till smooth, soft and slightly sticky, do not be tempted to add more flour unless it is exceptionally sticky.
It might help to lightly grease your hand or dust with flour to knead.
Machine mixing of Soft Potato Bread
You can also use a mixer to knead your dough.
Use the dough hook for 5 minutes, it will become smooth and shiny, continue kneading for another 5 minutes.
The dough will be smooth, soft and slightly sticky, do not be tempted to add more flour unless it is exceptionally sticky.
Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover and let rise for 45 minutes till double in size.
Grease 2 loaf pans (10″ x 5″) and set aside.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently deflate it by removing as much air as possible.
You will have a slack dough at this stage.
Cut it into 2 pieces and put each into a pan.
Cover and let rise 45 minutes till dough has puffed up.
During the last 10 minutes of this 2nd rise, preheat the oven to 180 deg. C.
Bake bread for 30-35 minutes till top is golden brown.
It should make a hollow sound when knocked.
Leave in the pan for 5 minutes then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely before storage, if you can wait that long before devouring it.
- Do not be tempted to add more flour to your slightly sticky dough, unless it is exceptionally sticky.
- It might help to lightly grease your hand or dust with flour to knead.
- The bread can be frozen for longer storage.
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