warm milk water and butter in sauce pan to 110 degrees F. It may look slightly curdled, but don't worry. A microwave oven can be used instead. DO NOT OVERHEAT - you will kill the yeast.
mix 2 cups flour with sugar salt soda and yeast. Add the liquids, and mix by hand for 2 minutes. Add 1 additional cup flour and beat until a thick batter (about 2 minutes). Add 1 additional cup flour, then dump out onto a board and start kneading. Add flour as needed to make a nice dough. Knead for about 8 minutes.
place 2 cups flour/sugar/salt/soda/yeast in the work bowl and pulse to mix. Add 1/2 the liquid, and pulse mix. Then add 1 additional cup of flour and pulse mix. Add 1 more cup flour and pulse mix. Add flour in 1/2 cup increments until the dough forms a ball. Then knead for 45 seconds.
place dough ball in a greased bowl and cover tightly with saran wrap. Place in a warm place ( 80-100 F ) and let rise until doubled in volume (1 hour with normal yeast, about 1/2 with rapid rise). You should see respiration products on the saran wrap within 5 minutes. If not, you killed the yeast.
punch down in the bowl, and divide into two halves. Place each half in the loaf pan on or on a cookie sheet. Cover with wax paper and let rise for about 45 minutes (1/2 hour with rapid rise). start preheating the oven 20 minutes (to 375 F) before the rising is done.
Brush the loaves with the egg wash, and bake 45 minutes. A loaf will sound hollow when thumped on the bottom when done. Cool on wire racks.
after cooling completely, wrap tightly in a plastic bag. Will keep frozen for up to two months.
place in a 200 F oven for up to 20 minutes.
From the Dinner Co-op