Our Daily Bread
Since the arrival of the KitchenAid I've been very very good about making my own bread. Things started with the onion bread tart and since then I've done a bit of experimenting and I've found it really very easy to fit bread making in with all the other activities, including preparation for the Eggs Factor!
My first batch of bread was turned into rolls using the Patricia Wells' recipe which is the base of the tart. These would be brilliant dinner rolls, although they rose a bit too much to be successful for sandwiches (our main concern). I'd definitely revisit the recipe for anything where you need a solid bread base. I think it would even do for pizza base ...
At work, someone suggested digging out a Jamie Oliver bread recipe. As I don't actually own any Jamie Oliver books, I consulted google and hit upon this recipe. I have no idea how true to the original Jamie Oliver recipe this is, but I do know that it's worked for me as a good basic dough.
Start with 1 teaspoon of yeast, 1 tablespoon of honey and 12 fl oz of warm water (this is approximately 325mL). Combine these (don't forget, you can let your stand mixer do the work for you!), and leave for 5 or so minutes until the yeast starts to bubble up.
Mix in a generous teaspoon of salt and 500g of strong white bread flour and knead the dough until elastic. Put in a bowl (I rub olive oil over the dough first, to stop it sticking too badly), cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge over night.
When ready to make the bread, remove from the fridge, punch down the dough and knead it for about 10 minutes on a floured board. I find that just shaping it into a rough loaf shape and leaving it on a floured baking tray produces a loaf which is just right for making sandwiches. Leave the bread to rise until double (an hour or so) and then bake at 225C for 20-25 minutes or so.
But the real fun with bread making is experimenting. With this basic dough I've had great success with substituting stoneground wholemeal for half of the white flour, and also adding a teaspoon of carraway seeds to this basic white mix.
Because this has turned out to be such a foolproof, and QUICK, method, this is our standard mid-week way of producing bread. I'm hoping to do some more substantial experimenting in the near future ... but in the meantime, I'll be churning out variations on this basic theme.
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