5-6cupsall-purpose flouradd more if needed to get to a pliable dough
1largeegg whitefor brushing on loaves
Dissolve yeast, 1/2 cup warm water, and 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar in a small bowl.
In a large bowl or stand mixer, combine 2 cups hot water, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, the salt, and the oil. Add 3 cups of flour to the mixture in this large bowl/mixer and mix well. Stir in yeast mixture.
Add 2 – 3 cups more flour and mix until well blended. (At this point your dough will still be quite sticky). Leave in bowl, cover with a towel and let rise for 1 hour. (If using a mixer, remove the bowl from the mixer and cover. Otherwise your paddle attachment or dough hook will get covered in dough when it rises). NO KNEADING IS REQUIRED.
After the rise, if the dough is too sticky to handle, add more flour until its workable. For some people this can be up to a cup or more! Just don't dry out the dough. Add by quarter cupfuls until its workable.
Divide dough into 2 (or 3 if you want smaller loaves) pieces. Roll out each piece on a floured surface into the length desired then roll up lengthwise like a jelly roll. If it's still too sticky, add more flour until it's workable but not dry.
Put on a greased cookie sheet, sealed side down, and tuck the ends under. Slash the top diagonally across the top every couple of inches with a sharp knife.
Cover and let loaves rise 30 more minutes.
While loaves are rising, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Whisk the egg white and brush over the top of loaves.
Bake for 25 – 30 minutes.
If your dough is still super sticky, you can add small amounts of flour until the dough just comes together.
You can use the packets of active dry yeast available at any grocery store. I bake a lot of bread, so I prefer to by SAF instant yeast in larger packages. If you use active dry, just follow the instructions in the recipe and let it sit for a few minutes to proof (it will get a little foamy).
When a bread recipe calls for warm water, the temperature should be around 110 degrees F. If the water is too hot it will kill the yeast, and too cold will delay the rise process.
Use regular white granulated sugar for this recipe.
In a separate step, you'll also use hot water in this recipe. Since you are mixing it with other ingredients before adding the yeast mixture it will be fine. You want hot tap water, not boiling water.
Regular everyday table salt is used, not Kosher or sea salt.
A note about yeast:You can use active dry yeast or instant yeast. If you use active dry yeast it needs to be proofed in order for it to be reactivated. Instant dry yeast doesn't need proofing. Active dry yeast must be reactivated by proofing in warm water, or the bread won't rise properly. This process is to "prove" that the yeast is still alive.
This recipe calls for vegetable oil, but olive oil can also be used.
We are using all-purpose flour, white not wheat, to make this bread.