Catherine Atkinson’s Sweet Potato Bread

Having tried the yummy buttery brioche bread recipe here from the book “Brilliant Breadmaking” by Catherine Atkinson, I am tempted to try another one.

This time, it’s the sweet potato bread. I have only used sweet potato in Chinese steamed dumplings, aka ‘bao’, so not sure how it would turn out in bread!

Recipe adapted from ‘Brilliant Breadmaking’ by Catherine Atkinson.

Catherine Atkinson’s Sweet Potato Bread – makes a 450g loaf

240g             bread flour
3/4 tsp         brown sugar
1/2 tsp         salt
3/4 tsp         instant yeast
4 tsp             milk powder
100g             sweet potatoes, boiled & mashed
175mL         cooking liquid, made up with water
10g               butter/oil

  1. Peel the sweet potatoes, cut into small chunks and simmer until softened. Reserving the cooking liquid, drain the sweet potatoes and simply mash with a fork.
  2. Dry ingredients first, load all ingredients into the bread pan. Bury the yeast in the flour at the top.
  3. Select a mode (I used no.6 – Rice Bread, light crust, no raisins) and start the machine.


I forgot about brown sugar and used caster sugar. Also, I used a delay timer for this and  turned out, it wasn’t a good idea. The dough overproofed and became a slobby mess. I tried to reshape it but it was too sticky and flabby then and could not hold its shape at all. overproof

I nearly threw the mess of a dough away but in the end I decided to bake it in the oven. Luckily it exceeded my expectations and was perfectly edible! 😆

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Meanwhile, refusing to admit defeat, I prepared another batch using the same recipe (remembered to use brown sugar this time of course), but this time I chose the ‘Rapid Bread’ mode as I wanted it quick.

Again, this wasn’t the greatest idea as the breadmaker had not completely cooled down. The dough became ridiculously wet and sticky during kneading (although I had already reduced the liquid by 10ml) and every turn of the kneading blade gave a loud squishy sound….ewww. Reminded me of my previous failed tang zhong bread. 😥 Anyway, it rose OK and baked OK. In fact, it smelled quite good when it was baking!

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While the one in the breadmaker was still baking, the one in the oven was done. It looked promising, and it was.


The crust was soft, as was the bread itself. The texture was a lot better than I was expecting. 🙂 A bit like sourdough bread with a soft crust. The only letdown was the taste. It was absolutely bland! 😥 The absence of any dairy had a huge effect on the taste of the bread. Not mentioning the teeny teaspoon of sugar used… I think, since this is a British recipe, the bread was supposed to be bland as it was to go with dips, strong-flavoured sauces and stuff like that. Not our typical Asian sweet bread. 😐

After a short while, the one in the breadmaker was done. join join 4

The top crust was as smooth as a baby’s bottom! 😆 Other crust was rather soft too.

The bread was super soft, as you can see from the way it folded back on itself at the top.

I just need to demonstrate its softness as it was really soft.


Really really soft. Slicing was a nightmare!


I have never made such soft bread with this breadmaker. It remained soft and moist even after cooling. The breadmaker one taste slightly better than the one baked in the oven. Maybe it was the brown sugar. Even so, it’s flavour is still way behind the typical Asian soft bread… 😦

How many times have I repeated ‘soft’? 😆

One thing both bread (oven + breadmaker) shared was the sheen on the bread. It was a little shiny, like those sheen you find in sourdoughs.

Not sure if I will use this recipe again, I really liked the softness of the bread, but did not like the flavour at all! 😥


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