Patricia's Basic Bread Dough
from Martha Stewart Living
Makes 1 1/2 lbs. dough
One simple, easy-to-prepare bread dough can be transtformed into breads, both sweet and savory. Chef Patricia Wells likes to use this dough in everything from pizza to dinner rolls.
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/3 C. lukewarm water (about 105 degrees)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon fine sea salt (I use what's in the blue canister, Morton's)
4 C. bread flour, plus more if necessary
1. In the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, combine yeast, sugar, and water, and stir. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in oil and salt.
2-Add flour, a little at a time, mixing at the lowest speed until the flour has been absorbed, and the dough forms a ball. Continue on lowest speed until soft and satiny but still firm, 4 to 5 minutes. Add more flour, if necessary, to keep the dough from sticking. The dough should be soft.
3. Transfer the dough to a bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap in the refrigerator. Let the dough rise in the refrigerator until double in bulk, 8-12 hrs. The dough can be kept for 2-3 days in the refrigerator. Simply punch down the dough as it doubles.
NOTE: I don't do steps 2 and 3 the way stated above. After the dough becomes a ball, I then knead it in the mixer for 5 minutes on high. I transfer to an oiled bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to double in size. I then punch down and shape into loaves and put into greased pans, making sure a little oil in on the tops to avoid drying out. I cover with plastic and allow to raise. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. ANOTHER NOTE: I usually double this recipe and make 3 loaves out of it.