Potato bread made with yeast, flour and mashed potato is a hearty bread, perfect for serving with soups and stews.
There are many traditional Irish recipes potato breads and cakes including soda farls made with potato, boxty potato pancakes made with mashed and grated raw potato, and potato cakes made with mashed potatoes.
This recipe is a little different. It's a yeast bread with mashed potato added to the dough as it rises, and trust me, it's delicious.
Here's my version of these rustic loaves.
Table of Contents
Ingredients For Irish Yeast Potato Bread
The ingredients for this Irish bread are simple and easy to find.
Here you’ll find a quick list of what you’ll need for this recipe. Check out the printable recipe at the bottom of this post for US and Metric equivalent versions of the recipe. There you can choose the measurement system that works best for you.
- mashed potatoes
- reserved potato cooking water
- active dry yeast
- warm water (110° to 115°to dissolve yeast)
- warm milk (110° to 115°)
- butter (melted)
- all-purpose flour
- butter or oil (to grease the mixing bowl for the bread to rise in)
Note: It's best to use drier, floury mashed potatoes for this recipe.
Directions For Irish Yeast Potato Bread
Here you’ll find step-by-step photographic instructions to help you recreate this recipe successfully. There are plenty of tips included along the way.
The key to successful potato bread is time and patience to allow the yeast dough plenty of time to rise.
Make the Potato Bread Dough With Mashed Potatoes
The first step is to boil and mash the potatoes. If you have left over mashed potato feel free to use it. However, I don't recommend using mashed potatoes laden with butter and cream. The extra fat in the potatoes upsets the balance of ingredients in this bread recipe.
So first, peel and cube the potatoes, and cover them with water in a small saucepan. Bring them to a boil, turn the heat down, cover and simmer them for 15 to 20 minutes until tender.
Strain the potatoes over an oven-proof bowl or jug.
A little of this liquid is great in the bread, but if you are using older mashed potatoes, and don't have any reserved potato liquid, just replace it with an additional half cup of warm water.
Mash the potatoes.
It's important to make sure there are no lumps in the potatoes, so I like to press them through a strainer. A food mill works great, but I'll have to wait until Christmas for one of those. As you can see from the photo the strainer works just fine.
Set the potatoes aside to start preparing the yeast and dough.
Add a half cup of warm water to the mixing bowl of an electric mixer. The water should be between 110° to 115° F.
Sprinkle the contents of two yeast packets over the water. Let it rest for about 10 minutes. The yeast is ready when it starts to bubble and grow foamy.
While the yeast is working its magic, sift all of the flour into a large bowl.
Once the yeast is bubbly add all of the wet ingredient.
First add the warm milk and a half cup of reserved potato cooking water.
Add the sugar and salt.
Toss in the softened butter.
Add about 4 cups of the sifted flour (a little over half of all the flour).
And whatever you do, don't forget the mashed potatoes.
Just toss them in on top of the warm liquids and flour.
Knead with a dough hook of an electric mixer.
Gradually add an additional 2 to 3 cups of flour to form a stiff dough. Knead it in the mixer until the dough is smooth and glossy, which takes about 8 minutes of constant kneading.
If you don't have a mixer with a specialty dough hook, you can add the flour by kneading it into the dough on a clean, floured work surface. Great work for building those arm muscles.
Proving The Dough Or Letting It Rise
Grease a large bowl with oil or melted butter. Place the kneaded dough in the bowl and turn it over to oil up all the surfaces of the dough.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean dish towel. Set in a warm, draft-free space and let the dough rise and double in size (about 1 hour).
I like to put the bowl in my cold oven. I find it is the best way to control cold air drafts, especially when the air conditioning is blowing in the summer.
See how much the dough rises.
Punch the dough down.
My little girl loves to watch the dough deflate.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface.
Divide it into two equal halves. Take each section,and knead it lightly to shape it into a loaf.
Place each dough section into two greased loaf pans (9 inch x 5 inch).
When I make this bread I always make two loaves. All the waiting and kneading seems wasted on just one loaf.
Cover again and let the dough rise for an additional 30 minutes until doubled in size.
While the dough is rising for the final time, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
It's amazing to see how much the dough expands over time. Lightly dust the top of the loaves with flour if you like a rustic looking crust.
Bake the loaves for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for a further 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. The loaves are cooked if the base sounds hollow when tapped.
I dusted the loaf on the left with extra flour for a rustic crust.
Remove the loaves from the pans and cool them on a wire rack.
This bread is delicious when served fresh. It freezes well for up to two months.
This is a great bread to accompany soups and stews, or for rustic sandwiches with thick slices of hearty bread.
Hope you enjoy this bread as much as my family does.
Video and Recipe Card for Potato Bread
Here's a short video outlining the steps for making this delicious bread.
Here is the printable recipe card.
Potato Bread - Yeast Recipe
- 1½ cups mashed potatoes 2 - 3 medium potatoes boiled and mashed
- ½ cup reserved potato cooking water
- ½ ounce active dry yeast 2 packets ¼ ounce each
- ½ cup water warm between 110° to 115°to dissolve yeast
- 1 cup milk warm between 110° to 115° to activate yeast
- 2 tablespoons butter melted
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 7 cups all-purpose flour 6 to 7 cups
- 2 tablespoons canola oil to grease the mixing bowl for bread to rise in.
- Peel and cube the potatoes. Place in a small saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down, cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until tender.
- Drain the potatoes, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid.
- Mash the potatoes. Press through a food mill or strainer to remove any lumps. Set the potatoes aside.
- Empty the yeast packets into a large mixing bowl. Add the warm water and set aside for about 10 minutes until the mixture is foamy.
- Add the warm mashed potatoes, warm milk, reserved potato cooking water, melted butter, sugar, salt and 4 cups of the flour.
- Knead with a dough hook of an electric mixer. Gradually add an additional 2 to 3 cups of flour to form a stiff dough. Knead it in the mixer until smooth and glossy, about 8 minutes.
- Grease a large bowl and transfer the bread dough. Cover with plastic wrap or a clean dish towel. Set in a warm, draft-free space and let the dough rise and double in size (about 1 hour).
- When risen, punch the dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into two equal halves.
- Take each section, knead lightly and shape into a loaf.
- Place into two greased loaf pans (9 inch x 5 inch). Cover again and let the dough rise for an additional 30 minutes until doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F while the loaves are rising for the final time. Bake the loaves for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees F and bake for a further 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. The loaves are cooked if the base sounds hollow when tapped.
- Remove from the pans and cool on a wire rack.
Nutrition Information is estimated based on the ingredients and cooking instructions as described in each recipe and is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Please note that nutrition details may vary based on methods of preparation, origin and freshness of ingredients used.
Thanks for following my recipes and ramblings.
Slán agus beannacht,
(Goodbye and blessings)
Mairéad -Irish American Mom
Pronunciation - slawn ah-gus ban-ock-th
Mairéad - rhymes with parade
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