Ever wonder why a bread recipe includes mashed potatoes? The potato's starchy quality absorbs liquid during the kneading stage, and it holds onto that liquid during baking. The bread finishes with a crisp, brown exterior crust and a flavorful, moist interior that helps the bread keep longer. —Joan Ranzini, Waynesboro, Virginia
- 1 large Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 cup warm 2% milk (70° to 80°)
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 4 cups bread flour
- 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- Additional grated Parmesan cheese
- Place potato and onion in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Drain; mash until potatoes are smooth (about 3/4 cup); set aside.
- In bread machine pan, place the milk, mashed potato, egg, butter, honey, cheese, parsley, salt, pepper, flour and yeast in order suggested by manufacturer. Select dough setting (check dough after 5 minutes of mixing; add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water or flour if needed).
- When cycle is completed, turn dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into thirds. Shape each into an 18-in. rope. Place ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid; pinch ends to seal and tuck under.
- Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Uncover; brush top with beaten egg. Sprinkle with additional cheese. Bake at 350° for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack. Yield: 1 loaf (16 slices).
Originally published as Braided Onion-Potato Loaf in Taste of Home April/May 2012, p37
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