Sunday, July 21, 2013
Basic Bread recipe
400g Strong White Bread Flour
100g Wholemeal Flour
15g Dried Active Yeast
Sugar or Honey
350ml Tepid Water
1] Put the Yeast in a small bowl, add some Sugar or Honey and a dash of tepid water. Let it sit in a warm place until it froths up nicely.
2] Measure out your Flour and add the Salt, mixing it in.
3] Add the Yeast and mix through, and quickly add the Water. The Salt will kill the Yeast, so move fast.
4] Stir with a fork. You can use your hands, but it gets a bit messy.
5] When it starts coming together, turn it out onto the work surface. Add a glug of Olive Oil into the mixing bowl.
6] Using your hands, start working it into a ball, adding more Flour or Water as needed.
7] When the dough has lost it stickiness start kneading and stretching the dough for about 5 minutes.
8] Form the dough into a ball.
9] Roll the dough ball around in the Olive Oil and cover it with Cling Film.
10] Let it rest in a warm place until it has doubled in size.
11] Pull the dough out and gently knead it again for a minute or so.
12] Oil or Flour whatever loaf tin/tray/saucepan you are going to cook it in, dust the top with Flour and cover it with a tea towel. Place the pan/pot/loaf tin in the oven. This is important, as when you take the tea towel off the colder air hitting the yeast warmed dough will make it collapse, so it's best to not move the raised dough around from place to place.
13] When the dough has risen under the tea towel, put the oven on a low heat for a few minutes, then gently remove the tea towel. Shut the oven door gently and turn the heat up to 180°C/350°F/gas 4 and set the timer to 15 minutes.
14] After 15, revolve the pan/pot/loaf tin 180 degrees.
15] Cook for another 10-15 minutes until the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when you tap it with your fingers. Let the loaf rest on a wire rack for about half an hour.
If you have the time, do a second prove in the bowl before you do the final proving in the pan/pot/loaf tin.
Play around with the ratio of White and Wholemeal Flour.
Add in some finely chopped herbs to the dry flour mix.