Puerto Rican Bakery Bread
I want to honor two women:
My living wife Mamita, and my deceased sister (2nd eldest) Gretchen who died from cancer.
Gretchen met, my then wife to be, “Mamita” for the first time one Puerto Rican morning as we sat down to eat fresh bakery bread from around the corner and she fell in love with pan de agua as she relished the warm, soft, moist freshness of the bread with butter! She could not get enough of it and remarked repeatedly how deliciously enjoyable it was!
May we all be enriched and blessed by the sharing!Ingredients for Puerto Rican Water Bread (pan de agua)
Here is a recipe that is simple to make.
You can use the bread to make Cuban sandwiches or use leftovers to make bread pudding.
1 pack active dry yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon salt
5 cups all purpose flour
Flour for dusting the baking board
2 egg whites
2 tablespoons of water
1. Mix together the yeast, sugar, and warm water.
In a large mixing bowl, mix together the yeast, sugar, and warm water.
Cover the mixture and let stand for about twenty minutes.
The yeast should form a foam on the top.
2. Mix together the salt, flour and yeast.
Mix the flour and yeast mixtures together a little bit at a time by adding the flour to the yeast one cup at a time.
As you add the flour, the dough will start to form. When all the flour is added, knead the dough for about 10 to 15 minutes until it is elastic and no longer sticky.
Grease a big bowl. You can use the one you mixed the yeast or dough in.
Place the ball of kneaded dough into the bowl, cover, and let rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
The dough should double in size.
5. Divide the dough into two portions.
6. Form two loaves and slit the tops.
Place the loaves on the board and using a sharp knife place 3 to 4 slashes along the top of the loaves.
7. Brush loaves with egg wash and place in oven.
8. Bake the bread.
Then insert into 400 degrees oven and let bake for 35 minutes. The internal temperature of the loaves should be 200 degrees. The loaves should be golden and a lightly crusty.
Many thanks to all the wonderful bakers, chefs, cooks and special thanks to Hector Rodriguez for SHARING this pan de agua recipe!