Quickly mix in the flour, yeast, white sugar, and salt, add in the milk, and knead inside the bread maker. Warm up the milk to 35°C depending on the season.
This the dough being kneaded. Thoroughly knead for 13~15 minutes until it is smooth all over. I am using a 1.5 loaf bread maker.
Add in the butter that has been returned to room temperature, and knead for an additional 15 minutes. If you stretch it out slowly and it has a thin membrane, then the dough is done!!
Roll up the dough, let ferment to 2.5 times the size in a container such as a bowl etc. while being careful not to let it dry out. This time it took 90 minutes at 30°C.
After the 1st rise, punch it (fold into thirds two times), and let rise to 2.5 times its size once more. This time it took about 40 minutes at 30°C.
This is what it looks like swelled up 2.5 times. Place it onto a surface sprinkled with flour, press out the gas, divide into 3 equal portions, and roll it up. Cover with a wet cloth and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Stretch it out with a rolling pin to remove the gas, and shape like in the photo. It is good to roll it a bit tightly the last time.
Line up the dough in a pan coated in shortening, and press down firmly from the top to adjust the shape. Cover with a wet rag etc., and let rest at 40°C for 60-80 minutes.
Ferment to about 2cm from the bottom of the pan. Place a pan into the oven, and preheat to 200°C.
Place solid fat into the cut notches. (Using shortening). Solid fat = unsalted butter, unsalted margarine, etc.
See the depth of the notches from the photo.
Reduce the temperature to 180°C for 5 minutes (to steam), and then bake at 160°C for 20 minutes. It will swell up nicely and the crust will be soft .
Story Behind this Recipe
I love hotel bread that is sweet, soft and fluffy all the way to the crusts. I will keep increasing the sliced bread recipes.
Because we are using super strong bread flour, it will affect the oven spring if you don't knead it properly!! It should rise to approximately 2cm from the top of the pan. Since this is a combination with good oven spring, be careful not to let it over rise!! Milk can be reduced by up to 55 depending on the flour used and experience. This time I used shortening for the top butter.