Easy James Martin White Bread Recipe

Last updated on February 23, 2024

James Martin White Bread Recipe
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 15 Mins Cook Time: 25 Mins Total Time: 40 Mins

James Martin White Bread is a splendid example of baking at its finest, featuring a beautifully golden crust encasing a soft, pillowy interior. It’s the perfect accompaniment for any meal, from the simplest of breakfasts to the most elaborate dinner spreads.

This bread serves 6-8 people and can be prepared and baked in approximately 2- 3 hours, making it an accessible project for bakers of all skill levels.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of making James Martin’s White Bread, offering practical tips and insights to ensure your success.

What is James Martin’s White Bread Recipe?

James Martin White Bread is a classic, homemade bread recipe that boasts a golden, crunchy exterior and a tender, fluffy interior. Renowned for its delightful simplicity, it embodies the essence of traditional bread-making.

Easy James Martin White Bread

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Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Simple Ingredients: Utilizes basic pantry staples.
  • Versatile: Perfect for sandwiches, toast, or to enjoy on its own.
  • Satisfying to Make: There’s something incredibly rewarding about baking your own bread from scratch.
  • Customizable: Easily adaptable to include your favorite herbs or toppings.

Ingredients Needed to Make James Martin White Bread

  • Strong White Bread Flour: 500g (for the dough’s structure and chewiness)
  • Warm Water: 300ml (activates the yeast)
  • Fast Action Yeast: 7g (helps the bread rise)
  • Salt: 2 tsp (flavor enhancement)
  • Sugar: 1 tsp (feeds the yeast)
  • Olive Oil: 2 tbsp (for dough elasticity)

Now, let’s proceed to the detailed step-by-step instructions on how to make James Martin White Bread.

Instructions to Make James Martin White Bread

Preparing the Dough

  • Mix Dry Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine 500g of strong white bread flour with 2 tsp of salt and 1 tsp of sugar. Stir these dry ingredients together to ensure they are well-mixed.
  • Activate the Yeast: In a separate bowl, dissolve 7g of fast-action yeast in 300ml of warm water. Let it sit for a few minutes until it starts to froth, indicating that the yeast is active.
  • Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients: Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the yeast mixture along with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Use a wooden spoon to mix everything together until a rough dough forms.
  • Knead the Dough: Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. This process develops the gluten, which gives the bread its structure and texture.

First Rise

  • Let the Dough Rise: Place the kneaded dough in a clean, oiled bowl and cover it with a damp cloth. Leave it in a warm, draft-free place for about 1 hour, or until it has doubled in size.

Shaping the Dough

  • Shape the Bread: Once risen, punch the dough down gently to release any air bubbles. Shape it into a loaf by rolling the dough into a rectangle, then rolling it up tightly and tucking in the ends.

Second Rise

  • Second Rising: Place the shaped dough in a lightly greased bread tin. Cover with a damp cloth and let it rise for another hour, or until it has doubled in size again.

Baking

  • Preheat and Bake: Preheat your oven to 220°C (428°F). Once the dough has risen, bake it in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
  • Cooling: Remove the bread from the oven and let it cool on a wire rack before slicing. This prevents the bread from becoming soggy.

White Bread Recipe James Martin

What Do I Serve With James Martin White Bread?

  • Classic Sandwiches: Elevate your sandwich game by using slices of this homemade white bread.
  • Artisan Toast: Top with avocado, eggs, or your favorite spreads for a gourmet breakfast or brunch.
  • Soup Companion: Serve alongside a comforting bowl of soup or stew.
  • Dinner Side: Complement your main dishes with freshly baked bread.

Pro Tips to Make Perfect James Martin White Bread

  • Temperature Matters: Ensure your water is warm, not hot, to activate the yeast without killing it. The ideal temperature range is between 105°F and 115°F (40°C to 46°C).
  • Kneading Technique: Use the heel of your hand for effective kneading and develop the dough’s gluten. This process is crucial for a fluffy, well-structured loaf.
  • Proofing Location: Find a warm spot without drafts to help your dough rise properly. The top of a refrigerator or inside a slightly warmed oven (turned off) can be ideal spots.
  • Oven Spring: Slash the top of your loaf before baking to help it expand in the oven. This not only improves the bread’s appearance but also prevents the crust from splitting in unexpected places.
  • Watch the Crust: If the crust is browning too quickly, cover the bread with foil during the last 10 minutes of baking to prevent it from burning.
  • Cooling Time: Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing to ensure the best texture and flavor. Cutting into hot bread can cause it to become gummy.

Variations of James Martin White Bread

  • Herb-Infused: Add rosemary or thyme to the dough for an aromatic twist. Fresh herbs can make a delightful addition, especially if the bread is served with dinner.
  • Seeded Loaf: Incorporate sesame, poppy, or sunflower seeds for texture and flavor. Mixing them into the dough or sprinkling on top before baking adds a crunchy texture.
  • Whole Wheat Blend: Substitute half of the white flour with whole wheat flour for a healthier option. This variation offers a nuttier flavor and more fiber.
  • Cheese Bread: Fold in grated cheese during the shaping step for a cheesy delight. Sharp cheddar or Parmesan can add a savory depth to your bread.
  • Sweet Version: For a sweet twist, add cinnamon and raisins to the dough before the first rise. This variation is perfect for breakfast or a snack.

How do I Store James Martin White Bread Leftovers?

  • Room Temperature: Keep it in an airtight container or bread box for up to 3 days to maintain freshness.
  • Freezing: Slice and freeze in airtight bags for longer storage. Frozen slices can be toasted directly from the freezer.

How do I Reheat James Martin White Bread Leftovers?

  • Oven: Wrap in foil and warm in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 10 minutes.
  • Toaster: Slice and toast for a quick refresh, bringing back the bread’s original warmth and texture.

Nutritional Values (per slice, based on 12 slices per loaf):

  • Calories: Approx. 150 kcal
  • Protein: 4-5g
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Fat: 1-2g (depending on the use of oil or butter)
  • Sodium: 200mg (varies with salt used)
  • Fiber: 1-2g
  • Sugars: Less than 1g

FAQs

Can I use all-purpose flour instead of strong white bread flour for James Martin White Bread?

Yes, you can use all-purpose flour instead of strong white bread flour; however, the texture and rise of your bread may differ slightly. Strong white bread flour has a higher protein content, which develops more gluten, giving the bread its structure and chew. If you opt for all-purpose flour, the bread might be softer and less chewy but will still be delicious.

How long should I knead the dough to achieve the perfect texture?

Kneading the dough for about 10 minutes by hand is essential to develop the gluten fully, which gives the bread its elasticity and structure. If you’re using a stand mixer with a dough hook, kneading for about 8 minutes on a medium setting should suffice. The dough should feel smooth, and elastic, and should no longer stick to your hands or the bowl when it’s ready.

What’s the best way to tell if my bread has fully risen?

The dough has fully risen and is ready for the oven when it has doubled in size. A simple way to test this is to gently press your finger about half an inch into the dough. If the indentation remains without the dough springing back, it has sufficiently risen and is ready to bake.

Can I make James Martin White Bread without a bread machine?

Absolutely! This recipe is designed for manual preparation, so you don’t need a bread machine. The process of mixing, kneading, and allowing the dough to rise twice is simple, providing a hands-on baking experience that can be quite satisfying and therapeutic.

Final Words

Creating James Martin’s White Bread from scratch is a rewarding experience that brings the taste of artisan bread into your home. This guide aims to demystify the bread-making process, ensuring that bakers of all levels can produce a perfect loaf. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or new to the kitchen, this recipe offers a simple yet satisfying venture into the world of homemade bread.

Happy baking!

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Notes

Prep Time: Approximately 15-20 minutes Cooking Time: 25-30 minutes Total Time: 2 to 3 hours (including rising times)

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