Source: Martha Stewart Living, April 2007
- 1 envelope active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons warm water (110 degrees)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 cup warm milk (110 degrees)
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened, plus more for bowl and pan
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
Sprinkle yeast over warm water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add sugar, and stir until dissolved. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.
With mixer on low speed, gradually add milk, butter, and salt to the yeast mixture. Mix in flour, about 1 cup at a time, and mix on medium speed until combined. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until soft and smooth, about 5 minutes.
Place dough in a large, buttered bowl, and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan; set aside. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured work surface, and knead until smooth. Shape dough into a 9-inch-long log. Place in prepared loaf pan, and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until dough has doubled in bulk, 30 to 45 minutes.
Bake until top is golden brown and bread is cooked through, about 50 minutes. Unmold onto a wire rack; let cool.