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Freshly baked bread drives the senses wild like nothing else on Earth. Its aroma tickles the nose and awakens the fondest memories. Eyes widen at the steam coming off of its beautiful brown top. Taste buds tingle with excitement. Yes, eating freshly baked bread is an experience everyone should enjoy regularly. It isn’t hard to do, either. All you need are a few simple ingredients, an easy-to-follow recipe, and a couple of hours to make the magic happen. Then you, too, can stimulate your senses the way only fresh bread can.

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1. Activate the Yeast

Making white bread starts with heating 1 1/2 cups of water to 115 - 120 Fahrenheit. Invest in a cooking thermometer for best results - they are cheap, and you can find one at the local supermarket. Mix in two teaspoons of sugar or honey until it’s dissolved. Next, add in one packet of active dry yeast or, if you are using yeast from a jar, 2 1/4 teaspoons. Stir until everything is mixed together, then pour into a bowl. Let it sit for anywhere from ten minutes to an hour, depending on how much time you have. The longer you let it sit, the airier and lighter your bread will be, but one hour is plenty.

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