1 1/4 cups water
1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons instant yeast
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup mashed potato flakes
4 1/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3 Tsp fresh herbs (optional)
1) Pour the (warm) water into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the milk, salt, yeast and oil, and stir. Then add the potato flakes and the flour. Again, I do not use bread machines--I use my hands--but you can set the bread machine on the dough cycle or whatever you do to mix the dough. Or you can mix by hand with a wooden spoon.
2) When the ingredients are mixed together well enough so the dough comes away from the side of the bowl, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead (by hand) for several minutes until silky smooth. You can add flour if the mix is too wet, but don't add too much or you will lose the flaky texture in the final product.
3) Lightly oil/grease a mixing bowl. Place dough in the mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for 1-1.5 hours. Pat the dough down and turn it out onto a floured surface. If you want to make the puff shapes that I did, divide the dough in half, and then each half in three pieces.
4) Form a ball with each piece and place the balls in greased muffin tins, seam-side down. Let the dough rise in the tins 30-60 minutes (until they are noticeably puffy).
5) Preheat your oven to 350°F. Bake the puffs on the lower rack for about 35 minutes (keep your eye on them, every oven is different), or until golden brown. The puffs should sound hollow on the underside when tapped. Turn the loaf (or loaves) out and let them cool on a rack.
NOTE: Due to lack of preservatives in the dough, the breads taste the best within the first few hours of baking. I would recommend freezing them if you plan to eat them more than one day after baking, as they will rapidly become stale.