In a perfect world, I’d make everything by hand.
Like my furniture. My clothes. My food.
And especially my bread.
I’ve dabbled with bread-making a couple times in the past, but I always find more convenience in just purchasing whatever I’m looking for at the store. I mean, who doesn’t, right? When you think about the failed yeast activations. Or the lengthy proofing times. You start to question whether making your own bread from scratch is even worth it. So, last year when I shared this cranberry pecan bread, that was probably the last time I’ve made bread from scratch.
When you’re determined to make something and that something requires Cuban bread. And you haven’t the slightest idea where you would actually get some Cuban bread. You make the decision to make said bread. And it’s okay. Because truthfully, you DO want to make all of your own bread.
And okay, maybe what I was determined to make doesn’t REQUIRE Cuban bread, but it wouldn’t be the same without it.
So, again, I begin my journey to make more of my own bread. Because it’s just something I’m really determined to do. And, if you’ve been following my Facebook, you’ve probably guessed that my determination may have stemmed from those Cuban sandwiches I posted. Not following me? Why not?
But to be completely honest, the smell that freshly baked bread makes throughout the entire house?
Totally worth it.
And the Cuban sandwich that resulted from my newly determined bread journey?
Even more worth it.
Cuban Bread (Pan Cubano)
- 3 – 3 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
- 4 tsp. sugar
- 2 tsp. salt
- 2 1/4 tsp. yeast
- 4 tbsp. butter
- 1 1/4 c. water, warmed to 100 degrees F.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment, add the sugar, salt, yeast, and water. Let set for about 5 minutes or until the yeast becomes foamy.
Add the butter and three cups of the flour and mix to combine. Add the additional flour as needed, or until the dough starts to leave the sides of the bowl.
Switch to the kneading hook, and knead the dough for 6-8 minutes or until it is smooth.
Place the dough into a lightly greased bowl, turning the bread dough to grease all sides of the bread. Cover with a clean towel and allow to rise about an hour or until it is puffy (this dough does not necessarily need to double in size).
Divide the dough into six portions, shaping each one into a log. Let each log rest for 15 minutes, covered. After the 15 minutes have passed, taper the edges so the loaf is torpedo shaped.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Place the loaves on a slightly greased baking sheet and allow to rise, covered, for an additional hour. After their final rise, brush them with water, and slash a long slit down the middle of each loaf, lengthwise.
Bake the bread for 15 to 20 minutes or until the loaves are golden. Remove the loaves from the oven and cool.
FREEZE THEM: Have any loaves leftover? The are perfect to freeze!