Pain de Mie Recipe

This simple, fast-rising recipe incorporates some semolina flour which is not traditional but gives this loaf a bit more “tooth”, meaning it’s soft and light but not Wonder Bread fluffy.

12 1/2 ounces (2 1/2 cups) bread flour
5 1/2 ounces (1 cup) semolina flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
12 ounces (1 1/2 cups) milk or water if you prefer, room temperature
1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) soft butter

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, combine all the ingredients and stir until everything is moistened. Let it sit for about 5 minutes. Switch to the dough hook and knead for 6-8 minutes. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover it with a cloth and let it rise about 1 hour until almost doubled.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Turn out the dough and slap it with your hands to pop any large gas bubbles. Roll it into a log that’s about 13 inches long and place it seam-side down in a 14″ Pullman pan. Put the pan cover on and let the dough rise again for about another half hour.

Bake the loaf until it’s golden brown, about 40 minutes. Turn the loaf out of the pan and let it cool completely on a rack.

25 thoughts on “Pain de Mie Recipe”

  1. Speaking of Wonder Bread … how does Wonder Bread get so light and fluffy? It’s great stuff!

    I really enjoy your site. It’s so fun to read.

    1. Thanks Jeff! And I used to love Wonder bread too, especially for a peanut butter & jelly sandwiches. Brings back memories of childhood. As for how they get the texture, it’s a trade secret, but you can get something similar using this recipe. Use all white flour and then go a little further by adding about 1/3 cup of powdered milk. The fast rise plus the non-gluten solids and fat that’s added to the mix create a very soft and fluffy loaf…almost like the real thing!


      – Joe

      1. Hi joe! I can’t stop ogling at the beautiful recipes in your site. I had a question. I suppose powdered milk is milk powder? And should I be using the 1/3 cup milk powder in addition to the flour or take out that much bread flour from the recipe?

        1. Hello Aiesha!

          I’m probably missing something (I almost always am) but is there milk powder in this recipe somewhere? I’m not finding it. But yes, powdered milk, milk powder, dry milk, they’re all the same thing.


          – Joe

    1. Hey Lupe!

      You probably could, though there are a couple of other pizza doughs on the site that I think would work better. Look under the “Bread” menu!

      – Joe

  2. This bread is wonderful, just as you described. It makes the most crunchy yet soft toast, too. I think it does taste a bit like good pizza dough. Thank you again.

  3. Joe, when I’ve made bread with such a high ratio of yeast (albeit active dry, not instant) to flour and relatively short proofing time, I’ve found that the end result often has quite a pronounced yeasty taste and scent that one doesn’t find in either bakery or industrial sandwich bread. I haven’t tried your recipe yet, but any thoughts? Could the enclosed pan somehow affect this? I’ve never used a Pullman.

    1. Hey Jen!

      I’ve not had that problem with this bread. Generally speaking as long as they proof well — get nice and light before baking — breads tend not to have that problem. In my experience it’s usually denser breads that can have that too-yeasty taste, many times because the heat doesn’t penetrate terribly well or for long enough and some of those critters are left alive. Try this and see what you think. To me it’s a very solid sandwich bread. I’ll be interested to hear back if you try it!

      – Joe

    2. One thing that I have found is that Red Star yeast has a much stronger taste than Fleischmann’s or SAF. I keep bulk Fleischmann’s in the freezer.

      I haven’t tried this recipe yet, but it’s next on my list.

  4. Joe, any thoughts about simply wrapping a simple loaf pan tightly with foil to achieve the same results as the lid? I just can’t justify another single purpose kitchen thing.

    1. Hey DMC…it’ll bust right through the foil. You’d need something flat with a heavy weight on top. Steam is serious power!

      – Joe

    2. This comment is 6 years late, but I made this last night (it’s SO good!) with a pullman pan with no lid. I used a very flat aluminum cookie sheet as the lid and set a cast iron pan on top for a weight. Worked like a charm!

  5. Hi Joe, great site! Thank you! What are your thoughts about using this recipe for hamburger buns?

    Cheers, Jean

  6. Could we have a post on the difference between “punch down” as for this recipe and many others and “gently deflate” as so many artisan-type breads ask for? If you deflate, it doesn’t seem gentle to me! I’m good at punching down, not so much at gently deflating.

    1. Hey Sally!

      Great question. I’ll answer that on the blog today.


      – Joe

  7. I have a pullman pan designed for angel food cake; my husband removed the “ears” that keep it off the counter when cake is being cooled upside down and it works perfectly as a pan de mie pan–with the cast iron griddle on top to weight it. About twice the flour and other ingredients as your recipe and I get that loaf and 8 burger buns out of it.

  8. I only have 2 Pullman pans that are 9 inch not 13 inches. How would I adapt this recipe for a 9 inch pan?

  9. Hi Joe,
    This was a wonderful recipe! However, I had to use bread flour & fresh ground wheat flour today for the dough. This made it hard for the bread to rise. I made the full recipe & cut it at 9″ to fit my pullman pan. I made dinner rolls in my cast iron skillet with the extra. The rolls baked fine. (Nother as high as usual.) However, the bread only rose a little more than half the height of the pan, even with a significant amount of extra time. It was a good bread, but I would have liked it to have filled the pan to the top. I like to use wheat flour when I can, & I often have bread flour from other things I make. What accommodations should I make here?

    1. Hi Linda!

      Interesting improvisation. The fresh ground flour is what’s undermining the rise. It simply doesn’t have the strength to trap and hold CO2 bubbles, at least not for very long. The rolls are doing better because heat penetrates them faster, so they blow up quickly and set before before much CO2 can leak out. I’d say you can try cranking the heat on the loaf, though being much more massive than a roll, the extra won’t do you terribly much good (the outside will expand, heat and set before heat can penetrate all the way to the center, the result being a firm layer outer that will itself constrain the rise). With fresh flour your only real options are to either fill the pan with more dough, or cut back on the fresh flour in favor of flour that’s been more finely ground and treated and/or aged.

      Best of luck with the project, Linda!

      – Joe

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