I don't think you have any idea how much I absolutely adore bread. Considering how much I hated sandwiches as a kid, this may shock some people. I guess at this point I'm making up for lost time, or something like that.
I will eat white sandwich bread if I have to, but given the choice I'll go for a heartier multi-grain or whole wheat option. Or better yet, sourdough (mmmm). Someday, I'll attempt that one.
When a recipe for classic white sandwich bread popped up in my Reader, I knew I'd have to try my hand at it. During my year in London I practically lived off of the honey wheat tin loaves, so I decided to try and replicate the dense, slightly-but-not-too-sweet loaf.
The dough came together allllmost as fast as the whole wheat pizza dough, with some extra time for rising. I also had to let it rise longer than the directions said to, because the whole wheat flour is a bit heavier than the white flour. Worth it!
Honey Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread (Adapted from TheKitchn's recipe linked above)
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup milk (any type will do - I used skim and it worked well)
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons honey
4 1/2-5 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
If using a stand mixer, start with the paddle attachment. Pour water into your mixer bowl and sprinkle yeast on top. Let it sit for about five minutes to let the yeast activate. Melt butter, and mix together with milk, sugar, salt and honey in a separate bowl or mixing cup. Add it to the mixer bowl. Stir 1 cup of flour into the bowl and mix until you have a lumpy, very loose, mixture. Switch to the dough hook. Add 3 1/2 cups of flour (saving the rest in case the dough is too sticky while kneading) to the bowl and mix on low until the dough is smooth and elastic, 8-10 minutes. If the dough really sticks to the bowl while kneading, add flour 1 tablespoon at a time until it's not sticky anymore. When the time is up, form the dough into a ball and place in a greased bowl. Let it rise for an hour in a warm place.
Once the hour is up, turn the dough onto the counter, separate into two pieces, form each into a ball and let rest for about 10 minutes. Grease two loaf tins and form each ball into a loaf (I followed these directions). Let the dough rise for another hour or so, or until it at least clears the top of the tin. Halfway through this stage, preheat your oven to 425*. When the dough has risen enough, turn the oven down to 375* and bake the loaves for 30-35 minutes (mine were in exactly 30). Turn the loaves onto a cooling rack and let them cool completely before slicing. Trust me on this one. If you slice too early you'll bring the bread with you as you move the knife down (think slicing soft cheese).