Contrary to what the title of this post may have led you to believe, this post is about bread. Specifically, a bread I baked for making toast. And sandwiches, but that is not the point.
When I was a kid, my father made me a sandwich every day to take to school in my lunch bag. He bought a loaf of bread over the weekend and I got the same bread for the whole week. Sometimes it was buttermilk, sometimes multi-grain or hawaiian. But I was always intrigued when he brought home potato bread. It certainly didn’t taste like potatoes. It seemed to bear no resemblance to them. Puzzling though it was, it was good bread – quite soft, though it never got mushy, and with a mildly sweet flavor. When we had this bread around I always had toast for breakfast. Crispy on the outside and slightly soft on the inside, potato bread seemed to be the perfect toasting bread. I liked it with butter and cinnamon-sugar.
Wanting to reminisce, I looked up potato breads and was slightly surprised to discover that they involved nothing more than adding potato flour, instant potato flakes or a mashed up baking potato to my dough. It seems that potatoes keep the bread moist and tender. So. I baked up a loaf of toasting bread.
It lived up to my expectations with a fairly open but very even crumb and a moist interior. I baked a bit of the dough off as dinner rolls, which were excellent, and saved the loaf for recreating my childhood.
Here’s the recipe. Use it for toast:
1/4 cup warm water (110F)
1 packet active dry yeast
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup instant potato flakes
2 1/2 cups ap flour
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp oil or butter (optional)
Extra milk for brushing top of loaf (optional)
Combine yeast with 1/4 cup warm water until foamy, about 10 minutes.
Add yeast mixture to milk, water, potato, 1 cup flour, oil and salt in an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Mixing on a low speed, add remaining flour until dough comes away from the sides of the bowl. Add a bit more flour, if necessary.
Knead by hand on a floured surface until elastic and smooth, about 5 minutes.
Place dough in a lightly greased bowl to rise until doubled, 1 – 1 1/2 hours.
Gently deflate dough and shape into a rectangle. Place dough into a greased loaf pan (9X5) and let rise, covered with a dish towel, for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375F.
Brush loaf with a bit of milk, if using. Bake loaf for 30 minutes. Remove from loaf pan and cover top of loaf with foil to prevent over-browning. Place directly on oven rack for 15 more minutes, or until bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
Let cool before slicing. Store well wrapped.
JessicaApril 5, 2005
I LOVE potato bread! My favorite is Martin’s Whole Wheat Potato Bread. Soft like white bread, sweet like hawaiian bread, and more fiber than 100% whole wheat bread. Can I do a 1:1 sub for the potato flakes with potato flour? Potato flour is so cheap in Chinatown.
NicApril 5, 2005
According to the bad of potato flour at the market, it’s a 1:1 sub with instant potatoes in baked goods. Next time maybe I’ll got to china town – I bought the instant because the price for potato flour at Whole Foods included a first born. Ok, it wasn’t that bad, but still…
DavidApril 6, 2005
Hi Nic., thanks for visiting my blog. This toast looks delicious. You have incredible food photography skills.
NicApril 6, 2005
Thanks, Carpal Fish. I’m a fan of your blog too. As for the photos, I’m thrilled you like them. I do try. =)
drbigglesApril 6, 2005
Har har, you lived in a Hom.
Hey, you think someone of my ilk could make potato bread? Even if it doesn’t have bacon in it?
NicApril 6, 2005
Yes, Dr. B, even you could make potato bread. The good thing about baking in a loaf pan is that you don’t have to shape the bread if you don’t feel like it. The pan holds it together. Of course, I see you’re becoming a proficient baker with all those muffins…
TApril 6, 2005
great minds indeed! 🙂
potato bread is super. i like it for sandwiches too- its so nice and soft, and a lot better than plain white bread in my opinion.
ps. ive never even heard of potato flakes! you learn something new everyday.
NicApril 7, 2005
Tanvi – They sell instant potato flakes at grocery stores for people who just want to “add boiling water” to create mashed potatoes instead of boiling the potatoes in water in the first place. I’ve actually never used them to maked mashed potatoes, but they do produce some fine bread.
Trent MontonDecember 12, 2005
Wishing you all the best!