Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Bread Making Tutorial

Making bread is really easy, but people tend to get put off making their own bread because it takes a while. Most of the time involved however, is in waiting for it to prove, rather than the actual making of it.

So, I thought I'd show just how easy it is.
First of all, the ingredients.

500g strong white or wholemeal bread flour
1 Sachet of easy blend yeast
2 teaspoons of salt (I use slightly less, about 1.5 teaspoons)
2 teaspoons of sugar or honey
2 Tablespoons of olive oil.
Just under 300ml of warm water.

Put the flour, yeast and salt into a large bowl. This is my KitchenAid bowl because I was feeling lazy and decided to let the mixer do the work of kneading!

Mix the oil, honey/sugar and water together.

If you're using a mixer, you'll need to use the dough hook.

Mix it together, adding the water mix slowly.

When it all comes together, either knead it by hand for about 15 minutes, (that's the hard part, but can also be very therapeutic!) or with the mixer for 5 or 10 minutes. Then cover the bowl with cling film or a damp teatowel.

And wait. For a couple of hours.

Then it should look like this, about twice the size it was.

Punch it down, or if you have kids, get them to do it. They'll love hearing the pffft sound!

Take it out of the bowl and give it a quick knead on a floured surface, then shape and place on a greased baking sheet or loaf tin, cover with a (dry) teatowel and leave it again, this time for about half an hour. Heat the oven to 220C.
Before second proving

After second proving

Pop it in the oven and cook for 10 mins, then turn oven down to 200C and cook for a further 20 minutes or so.

The bread is ready when it's golden brown, and sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Turn it out and leave to cool on a wire rack.

To make the walnut loaf, I used wholemeal flour, substituted walnut oil for the olive oil, and added a couple of handfuls of chopped walnuts when the dough was being mixed.

I'll have to show you how to make butter next!


Gigibird said...

I have a bread machine and it has really earned it's keep.
Luckily I am impervious to freshly baked bread otherwise I'd be a big as a house.

Joanna said...

I have been having an experiment about how not to get the bread tasting so yeasty. So I left the dough in the fridge over night, this worked really well.
For beetroot I like to roast it with the skins on. Then peel it, when its cool. Put it in salads or have it warm with cheese. I ran out of room to grow anything this year.

andsewtosleep said...

Fab tutorial. I must try. A kitchen aid - lucky you.

the flour loft said...

There's nothing better than freshly baked bead with heaps of butter and homemade jam.
My husband has created his own recepie using a third wholemeal and two thirds white bread flour 600g in all.(the kids prefer it like this). We mix the dough in a small breadmaker but always bake the loaf in the oven. This way we can mix a greater quantity of dough than the breadmaker would cope with baking, and get a large loaf.
Looking forward to the butter tutorial!

MollyKnits said...

mmmm, I need to find the time to bake some bread this weekend. I have been busy at work. Hope all is well with you!