We love homemade Italian bread in our house, but hours of kneading and rising has never really appealed to me. I mean, I CAN do it, but do I WANT to do it? Not really. So I started experimenting and came up with an easy Italian bread recipe that you can just throw in your bread maker. (This is for a 2 lb. bread maker)
1 and 3/8 cup water ( I know, random measurement, but it is really what works for this recipe. Make sure the water is room temperature)
2 tablespoon soft butter
Add this two to the pan and then add the dry ingredients in the order they are listed.
4 cups bread flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons dry milk
1 3/4 teaspoons salt (It is SO important to measure the salt correctly in bread!)
2 and 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast ( or 1 packet)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
In my personal opinion, bread makers over cook, so I ALWAYS cook it on the lightest crust setting and give it the longest amount of time for it to rise. So for instance in my bread maker this bread will mix, rise and bake for 3 hours. This Italian bread is pretty straight forward and so delicious!