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Yield: 3 loaves 8 1/2" x 4 1/2"
2 cups water
1 can (5 1/3 oz.) evaporated milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil, butter, or vegetable shortening
1/4 cup honey or sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 packages active dry yeast or 1 tablespoon instant yeast
7 to 8 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
Combine water, milk and the fat of your choice in a saucepan and heat until lukewarm. Pour into mixing bowl, add honey, salt, yeast, and 2 cups King Arthur Flour.Beat 2 minutes with an electric beater or vigorously by hand. Then, stirring by hand, gradually add enough flour until the dough pulls away cleanly from the sides of the bowl.
Put dough on a lightly floured board. To knead, fold the far edge of the dough back over on itself toward you. Press into the dough, pushing away with the heels of your hands. Repeat in a continuous rhythm. (After each push, turn the dough about one-fourth of the way around.)
While kneading, sprinkle only enough flour on the board to avoid sticking. Knead for 7 or 8 minutes, or until dough is smooth, elastic and doesn't stick to the board.
Round the dough into a smooth ball. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, turning over to grease the entire surface. Cover the bowl with a towel and set in a warm place. Let dough rise 1-1 1/2 hours or until double in bulk.
Punch down into the bowl with your fist to break up gas pockets. Divide the dough into six pieces. Next, form each piece into a round ball and place two, side by side, in each of the greased bread tins.
Cover lightly and let them rise in a warm place until they've doubled in bulk. Be sure not to let the dough rise more than double, for it can cause the loaf to fall or "flatten out" while baking.
Bake in a preheated 375°F oven for 35 minutes with pans apart. To make sure bread is done, remove a loaf from the pan and tap the bottom with your fingertips. If it sounds hollow, it's done.
Remove the bread from the pans immediately and place on cooling racks. Since this makes 3 loaves, you can freeze one or two loaves in plastic bags.
Tips For Making Dough in a Mixer or Processor
•In a mixer: Dissolve the yeast and sugar or honey in lukewarm liquid (water/milk) in the bowl of your mixer, then add the flour, oil or margarine, and salt. Mix on low speed until ingredients are thoroughly combined. If you have a separate dough hook, attach it and knead the dough for 5 to 10 minutes at one speed faster than your machine’s lowest speed. The dough will appear sticky at first, but will become more firm as it kneads. After 5 minutes, if it appears too sticky to work with, add more flour gradually, giving the machine at least a minute between each addition to absorb the flour.
•In a food processor: Most food processors have a dough capacity of about 1 pound (a recipe including about 3 cups of flour), so check your machine’s capacity before you start and tailor your recipe accordingly. Using the plastic dough blade, dissolve the yeast and sugar or honey in tepid liquid (water/milk) in the bowl of your processor. Add the flour, oil or margarine, and salt. Process for 60 seconds. If the mixture hasn’t formed a ball, add more flour, gradually, until it does. Process for a total of 90 seconds; if you work the dough longer than this, it runs the risk of getting too hot and killing the yeast.