Fresh bread is one of the simple joys of living: the appetising smell of it baking, then with the loaf fresh out of the oven, the temptation of tearing a piece off the loaf before it’s even had time for you to cool down. Riding home in the automobile from a bakery, or possibly a supermarket, with a warm, new loaf in a brown paper bag, you have to have an iron will to obtain home with this loaf intact, especially with children in the automobile with you too.
Baking bread in the home could be fun, if you’re not under pressure. It is just a task that children can assistance with, kneading alongside you. When you’re forming the loaves you can section off some dough in order for them to make their particular sculpturally shaped rolls, which they can try school proudly in their lunch boxes another day. Then you’re able to fill your home with the scent of baking bread, which makes it feel warm and welcoming on even the most dismal winter day.
Breadmaking machines, of the kind that you feed it the ingredients then it spits out a ready baked loaf several hours later certainly are a boon to those with no time for you to bake for themselves – you receive the pleasures of getting out of bed to the aroma of bread wafting through your house, without some of the labour to create it. Low Carb If you have time though, making bread is not hard. It could be a relaxing, meditative experience. As both hands rhythmically knead the dough, you can let your mind wander and feel the link with all the current men and women who’ve gone relating to this daily task over the centuries.
If you have never tried making bread before, try this simple recipe for an ordinary white loaf first. Nothing fancy, just plain, delicious white bread with far more chew and texture than shop bread could ever have.
White Bread Recipe
1kg/2.2lbs white bread flour
15g/4 ½ teaspoons instant yeast
1 tablespoon salt
about 700ml/ not exactly 3 cups water
You’ll need a large mixing bowl or you can heap the flour onto a clean surface and make a well for the water. I make use of a bowl and mix the flour and salt, make a well for the yeast, then pour the water in, gradually stirring with a knife. Once it’s come together into dough, tip it out onto a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes, sprinkling on more flour as you go, when it gets too sticky.
Knead by holding the dough with one hand and stretching it away with the heel of another, fold it back on itself and repeat. It will start off sticky and lumpy and gradually become smooth. After 10 minutes it should feel springy and rise up again if you dent it along with your finger. Put it in the bowl again, cover with a plastic bag or clean cloth and leave in a warm place away from draughts for an hour or so and a half, till it’s doubled in size. If you should be in the depths of winter and no warm places can be found, it will still rise, just taking longer. Pass by the doubling in size rather than the period of time it takes.
Knock the dough down – squashing most of the air out of it again – then shape it into two loaves, which is often round, long, plaited or sculptural! Put the loaves onto a floured or lightly oiled baking tray. Leave to increase again for 3/4 of an hour or so, again covering with a plastic bag or cloth, then bake at 200C/400F for 30 minutes. (If the children make small rolls they’ll be achieved sooner, check after 15 minutes). The bread is performed when it sounds hollow as you knock on underneath of the loaf.
The best thing about bread is that it’ll be edible even if you over-bake it, just crustier. My only failure with this particular recipe was initially I made it. I made one huge loaf with this particular quantity and the centre was a bit underdone, but even then we will eat the others of it.