- 1 Cup Warm – Hot (Tepid) Water
- 1 Package Fleishman’s Dry Active Yeast
- 1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons of melted real butter
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 2 1/2 Cups of All Purpose Unbleached Flour
- Olive Oil
In a large bowl, empty package of dry yeast and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar. Add 1 Cup hot tap water. Stir to dissolve the yeast. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes to allow yeast to foam and activate.
Add 2 1/2 cups of flour and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Stir the mixture with a fork until it forms a loose ball of dough. Remove and hand knead (turn out the dough) for about 3 or 4 minutes until smooth but slightly sticky. Form into a dough ball.
Wash the bowl and towel dry it. Add a small amount of olive oil to lightly grease the entire interior of the bowl. Place the dough ball in the bowl and briefly roll it around inside the bowl to lightly grease the surface of the dough. Cover the bowl loosely with the plastic wrap and a dry dish towel on top, and let the dough rise for 1 or 2 hours, or until doubled in size.
Preheat an oven to 450 F.
Punch down the dough and knead it again for 3 or 4 minutes. Place the dough in a butter greased or olive oil greased 8 x 4″ or 9 x 5″ metal bread baking pan and lightly press and spread the dough level and into the corners of the baking pan. Lightly coat the surface of the bread with some olive oil. Score the bread one or two quick swipes with a sharp knife.
Place the baking pan and dough on the middle over rack and bake at 450 F. for 15 minutes. (Do not open the over door for the first 30 minutes of baking). Then, after the first 15 minutes of baking, lower the oven heat to 350 F. and continue to bake for another 25 to 35 minutes. The bread is finished baking when the top of the bread is a golden brown.
Remove the baking pan and bread, and allow to sit and cool for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the bread from the baking pan so that the bread will not become soggy, and place the loaf on a cooling rack.
Slice and serve warm or cool with real butter. Enjoy!