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Oranges and Lemons: well Clementine and Lime Cake

It all started out with a homemade fish supper (aka fish and chips to anyone south of Hadrian’s wall). They maybe a gorgeous Saturday night treat, especially the way Stephen makes them  à la mode de Heston). However; early Sunday morning, feeling fragile, the lingering aroma is less than welcome. I hasten to add the fragility has nothing to do with being ‘worse for wear’.  Alas; due to the ever increasing number of freebies my doctor insists I need to function, anything brewed except tea or distilled is to be treated with caution. I have road tested this advice and I have to totally agree with it.

I digress. One tip I have seen, somewhere, suggests cooking a lemon in the microwave to make it smell fresher. Well if it will work in the microwave why not in the kitchen? Not being one to waste anything, and I mean anything, I recalled baking cakes that used boiled citrus fruit. On Christmas day I made an orange cake from one of  Tom Keridge’s books and in the dim and distant past I’m sure Nigella had a recipe for something similar. I tracked down the recipes and discovered that I did not have the ingredients for either one. Did that deter me? No siree!

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The final product!

The first task was to see what was missing, what could be substituted and what did I imagine it would it taste like. One of my first problems was not enough of any one particular citrus fruit. That was easily solved, just mix ‘n’ match. Into the pan went three clementines, and two limes, that  I must confess, were past their first flush of youth. I kinda figured that after they had simmered for two hours no one would be able to guess how dejected these tangy little monsters had once been. Next task was to overcome the distinct lack of almonds, ground, flaked, whole or blanched. It looked like it was going to have to be good old mix ‘n’ match again. I had desiccated coconut and pistachio nuts to play with. Rather an unlikely combination I must admit. I wanted cake, they wanted cake it’s safe to say we wanted cake. I also figured that with that amount of whole citrus fruits in the cake whichever nuts went in they were not going to be the strongest flavour.  The, now very soft, citrus fruits were chucked into the food processor and whizzed. Next in went 150g of coconut and 100g of pistachio nuts that I’d already blitzed to a coarse powder.  I like a bit of texture! These were hotly pursued by 6 eggs, 225g sugar and 1tsp of baking powder. Just whizz together and pour into a greased and floured tin and that’s it. Simples!

Once everything is combined it should have been a simple matter of baking, cooling and eating. Once I’m off script I really go off script. For some unknown reason I decided to make this in a bundt tin. This bundt tin, with all its little nooks and crannies, for this dense mixture to become attached to. Gorilla glue couldn’t have made it stick more.

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My bundt tin, not THE cake though

I wish I could say this is the cake, it’s not. The cake in question came out of this tin in at least six pieces of varying dimensions. At this point most sane people would have given up. I’m not sane and I hate waste. In the cupboard there was 200g of icing sugar and loitering on the chopping board was half of a lemon. Et voila another bonding agent. I stuck the cake together I iced the cake. There were still visible joins. Distraction tactics were needed. In the snack box there was a wee bar of dark chocolate. Hey presto a chocolate drizzle was born. What surprised us all was that through a serious of unfortunate events I had created an exceedingly good cake. For my husband’s birthday meal I’m thinking along the lines of a lime and coconut concoction, then there’s an orange, hazelnut and chocolate cake to consider. The possibilities are seemingly endless.

I’m not certain about using pistachio nuts again the colour was interesting to say the least.

The cake as it should have been, I’m giving a brief summary of the Ingredients that could be used

375g citrus fruit, either 2 large oranges or 5 or 6 clementines
250g ground almonds, or other nuts
225g sugar
6 large eggs
1tsp. Baking powder

Prepare a 23cm spring form cake tin, grease and lightly flour it.
In a medium pan place the fruit, cover with water and simmer for two hours.
Preheat oven 190°c / 170°c fan gas mark 5
Cut fruit in half and remove any pips, do this over a bowl so you don’t lose any precious juice. Place in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Add the remaining ingredients and blitz until well mixed.
Pour into your prepared tin and bake for 40 mins. Check after 30 and cover with foil if its baking too quickly.

This really is baking alchemy.

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No post is complete without a picture of the pooches.

This really is a simple cake; it makes a delicious dessert served with vanilla ice cream. Last night we added a tablespoon of homemade lemon curd and it was, well for once words fail me!

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You’re Crackers mi’Lady

What do you do if you run out of crackers? Silly question really, you either hop in the car and nip into the local shop or the nearest supermarket. Right?

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My canine hoovers, also known as Filska and Heath.

Or, you put your sensible walking shoes on, go into the outhouse pick up the dogs’ harnesses, collars, coupler and lead?  You then take all the walking paraphernalia into the house; calm the dogs down. Quickly tog Filska up, chase Heath around the sitting room; when you pretend to go without Heath he obediently sits in front of you, looking at you with his big innocent brown eyes as though butter could not melt in his mouth. I don’t know if he doesn’t like having all this gear on, because he certainly loves going out for a walk, or is he just being playful? The latter I suspect. Now back to the matter in hand do I, a confirmed baker-holic, go to all the bother of getting the dogs ready just to go out for a few minutes walk just to buy some savoury biscuits?  Would you? Nipping out in the car is out of the question, it’s in Lerwick and I’m at home. I suppose we could do without. No, impossible! I don my apron, turn on the oven and get cracking.

I’ve been itching to make some savoury biscuits for a while. The last batch I made was months and months ago, well Christmas was nearly four months ago after all. The family declared I was evil at that point as there was no way that they could resist homemade parmesan and cheddar biscuits.

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The madness begins with weighing up all the ingredients.

Today I decided to test their resolve again; however I was going to lighten them up a little: by using no cheese and less butter. My next baking experiment is savoury spelt crackers with a hint of rosemary and smoked paprika to perk them up. The uncooked crackers are quite a lurid orangey colour before they cook but they change to a nicer golden hue as they bake.

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Rolling them out; the first of five or six trays!

If there are more than a dozen left by the time I get up tomorrow I’ll be astonished (and slightly less svelte than I already am).

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Lead us not into.....

Don’t they look so easy to eat, so crisp, so savoury so small and so many too.  ‘Eat me’ is just written all over them.

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Spelt, Rosemary and Paprika Crackers.

300g spelt flour, or wholemeal.
40g sugar
1 TSP salt, I used an extra half of a spoonful more
1/2 TSP pimenton or ordinary paprika
1/2 TSP dried rosemary
100 g butter
100 – 110ml cold water

If you have a food processor place the flour, sugar, salt, butter, paprika and rosemary into the bowl and give everything a quick whizz around.
Slowly pour the water on through the feed tube until everything clumps together. I accidentally added 120ml of water and it was well past the clumpy stage, more pasty really – I added a couple of handfuls of plain flour to make it less tacky to touch. Opps!

Grease, or line several baking trays with baking parchment. I just used silicone mats.

Preheat oven to 200°c or 180°c fan

To make by hand mix the flour, sugar, salt, paprika, rosemary together rub in the butter to distribute it. Gradually add the water until all can be combined onto a ball.

Flour your work surface liberally and place a quarter of your dough on the surface. Keep your rolling pin well floured and roll out the dough as thin as possible and I mean wafer thin. Keep checking that it isn’t sticking, use a palate knife to ease it up and sprinkle more flour under it.
Cut into small squares -about 2cms. I used a pastry cutter but a knife would do the same job. As you can see mine were not all regular shapes. I’m a home cook and this isn’t The Great British Bake Off after all.
(I sprinkled some with salt and pepper, however this is entirely optional )
Carefully lift them onto your prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake for about 6 to 8 minutes. Keep an eye on them as they will quickly go from golden to dark, deep brown with a hint of carbonisation!

Leave to cool on a baking tray and they will crisp  a little more.
If you find that once the crackers have cooled they’re not crisp, pop them back in the oven for a couple more minutes.

Store it an airtight container. I believe that they could keep for a week. However; savoury biscuits never last more than a couple of days in our house.

I hope you are enjoying the musings and meandering s of this apprentice blogger. If you can please leave a comment. Thank you.

 

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At last the truth about Niela’s Buttocks.

How on earth did a loaf of really tasty bread end up with such an usual name? I can assure you this isn’t the name given to this bread by Dan Lepard;  it is after all, his milk loaf that provides the inspiration for this loaf.

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Niela's Buttocks!!

Are you sitting comfortably? Well, let’s begin.
I am, the day is rather overcast, but the view and the cappuccino are excellent.

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Having a coffee at Fjaro café bar

My youngest son has been helping out and then working for Nielanell, at her knightwear studio in Hoswick, for about six or seven years. I have hopefully helped to instill in him a love of food, whether it’s a healthy or unhealthy interest I don’t feel able to comment on. However; I’ve seen a jar of chocolate or cookie spread disappear with frightening haste, how he is not the size of a a brick kludgey I don’t know. As usual, I digress. At less than busy times or at the end of a particularly tiring day, when their batteries need recharging, talk turns to food. Niela has been entertained, any one who has met Samuel will be able to confirm that he can be very entertaining. There has been chatter about chips; musings about macadamia macaroons and banter about bread. I’m sorry but I’m a sucker for alliteration.

A change of location, yet another café.

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Why worry if the skies are gray... So let's have another coffee.

Breadmaking is an absolute passion and there is usually a lump of dough lurking somewhere in the kitchen. To cut a long story short, I’m also a sucker for sneaking song titles or well known phrases into my writing as well. I digress! Not being blessed with the worlds largest freezer Niela often ends up with some bread to sample. She also provides me with very valuable feedback. A loaf which reminded Niela of a bread she had eaten during her childhood, was a white loaf I made where I substituted milk for the water and then, in my opinion, added too much butter. My thinking that the fat and the extra sugars  would help to give the bread a softer crumb and a darker crust. The first one I admit was a little too similar to a poor man’s brioche. Back to the burgeoning collection of bread making books. I finally turned to well thumbed copy of The handmade Loaf by Dan Lepard. As usual I made one or two alterations to the basic recipe. I did find that you have to watch this bread like a hawk during its final minutes in the oven as it easily over browns. If this happens just turn the oven down by 20°c I have a fan oven; trying to cover a loaf with tin foil just doesn’t work. The foil just hovers, decorously, above the still burning bread. My husband spotted this loaf cooling, commented on its unusual shape, and that is why it’s now known as Niela’s buttocks. I won’t repeat Niela’s retort on learning the new name of this loaf. It did cast doubts upon the marital state of his parents though

My version of a milk loaf.
475g milk , I always weigh liquid, if you don’t its  just the same amount in ‘ml’ instead of grams (I used some buttermilk and skimmed milk in the one in the photo)
2 TSP instant yeast
75 grams butter or sunflower oil
625g stone ground white bread flour
25g honey
2 TSP salt.

My method does take liberties I must confess.
In a large bowl
Mix the dry ingredients; flour, yeast and salt don’t combine until  you’re ready to make the dough
In a jug or smaller bowl
Mix the wet ingredients; butter – melted, honey and milk
Combine the dry ingredients and pour the milky mixture onto it. I get my hands in a mix together until everything is thoroughly combined. It won’t look very promising, all rough and rather sticky, shape onto a rough ball.
Cover with a damp cloth or cling foil and leave for 20 mins.
Oil or wet your work surface, you don’t want to dry the dough out. Tip the dough onto the work surface, rinse the bowl,  give your dough a light and gentle knead a half dozen stretches and folds should do.
Oil your bowl lightly. Place dough back in the bowl, cover and leave for another twenty minutes.
Do a total of three rests and kneads at 20 minute intervals. Leave for about 40 mins until the dough has nearly doubled.
Tip the dough onto your lightly floured work surface, divide into two equal portions. Grease 900g loaf tin, our local wholefood shop has a ‘quick cake release which is what I use.
Shape the dough into two buttocks balls and place in your loaf tin, side by side.
Loosely cover and leave loaf to increase by about 50%. 
Pre heat your oven to  180°c/ 160°c fan
Depending on your kitchen rising time will probably be on 40 – 60 mins.
Place in the oven and bake for up to 50 mins.
Allow to cool before tucking into it.

This lovely loaf can sometimes be found lurking in our nice new bread bin, not for long though. Which you can just about see it in this picture with a couple of my other favourite bits of kitchen paraphernalia: the pasta machine with electric motor and the sides of my Brod and Taylor bread proofer.

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A typical baking session.

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The journeymenbakers’ blogs so far

https://journeymanbakers.wordpress.com/2015/04/13/an-italian-style-roast-chicken-and-vegetables/

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An Italian style roast chicken and vegetables.

The first time I cooked this meal was for when some friends visited us about a year or so after we moved to Italy. I needed to make something easy, child friendly and likely to appeal to a demi – vegetarian and a fish hating, confirmed carnivore.  Not much of an ask then. Above all I wanted the meal to have an Italian feel and the same time feel familiar. Kids can be fussy and I hadn’t seen one of them since he was a toddler. Meanwhile, I had to be the hostess with the most- ess whilst coping with very little sleep. Youngest son did not develop the habit of sleeping for more than a couple of hours at a time, or on his own, until he was four. For some unknown reason his older brother wasn’t too keen on having this noisy, projectile vomit producing wee darling sharing their his room! Being two months premature and living in a country where there were no health visitors to hold our hands we knew it wasn’t going to be a smooth ride.

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The potatoes and veg waiting to go in the oven.

Something involving some kind of fowl seemed to be the answer, probably chicken, was my thought. I didn’t know how well partridge, pheasant or poussin would be received. The ‘ubiquitous chick seemed an obvious choice. My Italian being rather ropey when it came to reading Italian recipe books, not that there were many available at the time. The cult of celeb. cookery books didn’t exist in Italy;  I had to find something from the couple I’d ordered from a mail order company, the almighty Amazon had yet to become popular.  I had a copy of Carluccio’s  ‘Italian Feast’ or one of Anna del Conte’s books to choose from.  So the winning combination was Pollo Arossto and patate al forno. In plain language that’s roast chicken, which by the way doesn’t see the inside of an oven, and oven baked vegetables and potatoes.

At least we had the weather on our side and the largest ‘paddling’ pool that we could safely fit in our sloping garden. Everything, well almost anything, seems better in the sunshine looking out over the heat haze towards Monta Rosa. With parents happy sitting on the covered patio sipping something cool and refreshing taking it in turns to sit  with a three year old, a four year old and an active almost walking baby in the pool. I don’t think anyone would really have noticed what meals we had; the weather was glorious, the wine plentiful, the company good and the children were content, most of the time. Or maybe my sunglasses were as rose tinted as the mountain that greeted us every morning when we opened the shutters.

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Not very pretty to look at - but delicious.

I digress! That is how this meal has become one of our favourites. It has been a regular all through our  sons’ lives. It has been the choice for birthday meals. It was what my husband chose to have on the last day of the Easter holidays. Another bonus is that the chicken only needs one glass of wine; which means I feel less guilty at opening a bottle of decent wine, as we get to have a glass with our meal.

The recipes for this meal aren’t really recipes at all.
For the chicken
2 tbsp butter
Some herbs- a sprig of rosemary and a few sage leaves
2 or 3 cloves garlic
1 chicken about 1.5 kg
1 lemon, unwaxed halved
Olive oil, a couple of tablespoons
A glass of white wine.

Place the herbs, 1tbsp butter and garlic into the cavity of the bird, rub the chicken all over with the lemon  halves, place one piece of lemon in the bird, grind some pepper over it and sprinkle with salt.
Heat the oil and remaining butter in a large flame proof casserole and brown the chicken all over. I often miss this out as once the chicken is carved you don’t notice its peelie – wallie exterior.
Pour over the wine, bring it up to the boil, place the lid on and simmer gently for between  1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. Test by pricking the thigh, the juices that run out should be clear. If the wine has evaporated, add a little water.
Place the chicken on a caving board and squeeze the juice from the other half of the lemon over it and cover with tin foil. Leave for a few minutes and then carve.
Serve with the cooking juices.

Patate all Forno
This really can’t be called a recipe.
Use as many vegetables as you want, this is what I often use for four adults.
Preheat oven 200°c /180°c fan

2 large onions, cut into wedges
2 peppers cut into large chunks
600g tomatoes either cherry tomatoes left whole or larger ones cut into wedges
600 – 800g potatoes cut onto thick slices
A few cloves of garlic, unpeeled
100ml olive oil
Good bunch woody herbs, rosemary, thyme, sage..

Divide the vegetables, garlic and herbs between two large shallow roasting tins,  pour the olive oil over them and, with your hands, give everything a good mix up to make sure everything is coated with oil. Place in the oven and cook until the edges of the onions are beginning to caramelise and the potatoes are soft. In my oven this usually takes one hour. Check after 45 mins.

This still remains one of our meals and it is one that seems as though a lot more effort has been put into it than it has. Serve with some good crusty, HOME MADE bread.

If you want to turn this into a full scale Italian meal serve a small portion of risotto or pasta with a sauce as a first course (the primo). Serve a salad after the chicken, potatoes and veggies (the second) and a simple desert (dolci) such as fresh fruit.

I’m now going to finish the leftovers, cold, with a salad for my lunch.

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A big sourdough loaf and another helping of Niela’s buttocks.

The mania goes on and the freezer is now officially  overfull full. As my Dr. has categorically told me that baking is therapeutic I shall carry on regardless. Hmm, she also said something about going out for long walks too. However, I didn’t quite catch that. Selective deafness isn’t confined just to the young, or so it seems. One day fairly soon, I realise, I’ll be heading back to the chalk face and our tightly packed freezer will be worth its weight in gold. Well that’s what I tell my husband and sons anyway. Does any one remember the Krypton Factor? Packing our freezer and cupboard shelves with various bakery products is like one of their challenges.

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Still, I needn’t worry as even though the bread has only been out of the oven a couple of hours there is only half of it left!  Its not in quite as bad as it sounds as a friend had a quarter. As usual we all had to sample it as soon as it was cool enough to be cut.

Yet again it has been quite a busy day. Lemon curd made to have with the challah crescent rolls for breakfast tomorrow. The sourdough was shaped and baked this morning (and tested) and a batch of Glasgow rolls have been made to go with the burgers, using freshly minced lamb from The Scalloway Meat Company,  that my husband is making as I write. Saturday is his cooking day so he normally makes something to go with triple – cooked chips. Funny how anything with chips always appeals to the men in your life, me too if I’m being truthful.

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Sourdoughs, although quite easy to make with a little patience and practice, does mean following a long list of steps. That I think I’ll leave to another time. What I want is to talk about those little delights known as Glasgow rolls which I met for the first time when I met my in-laws for the first time. As James Morton mentions in Brilliant Bread they make an ideal vehicle for transporting, another Scottish invention, square sausage from your plate to your mouth. Although they look similar to any other wee roll, they’re not. The crumb should be pillow soft and the outside should have the nearest hint of a crust- not crackly or crunchy, just a thin almost chewy crust. You’re looking at a roll that is neither a crusty roll or a soft one. It makes an ideal blanket around a Lorne sausage or a homemade burger. Here goes
For a batch of six rolls that are the ideal size to go with a quarter pound burger. With square sausages I would divide the dough into 8 pieces.
Ingredients
500g strong white bread flour
7g yeast, instant variety
20g sugar
10g salt
350ml low fat buttermilk.
Note
The original recipe says 330ml of whole milk. I was short of milk but had some leftover buttermilk from making soda bread. It is a substitution I intend to repeat. When we toasted the cut side of the buns,on the blisteringly hot cast iron griddle, they quick took on the characteristics of bread toasted over an end fire nicely flecked with deep dark, almost charred flecks, without the bread drying out at all.

Method
In a large bowl combine all your ingredients, mix thoroughly to combine and shape into a rough ball. Place back in your cleaned and lightly oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth or cling foil.

Leave for 20 minutes, wet your hands and slide them under the dough at one side, stretch the dough and fold it over itself. Give the bowl a quarter turn and repeat the stretching and folding. Repeat twice more 4 times in total.

Leave for another 20 minutes and do another set of stretching and folding.

Leave for another 20mins and complete the final set of stretching and folding.  Form the dough into a ball. The dough should be a lot more elastic now.

Return the dough to your, cleaned and oiled bowl. Leave for one hour to prove. Your looking for it to double in size.

Lightly flour your work surface and gently tip your dough onto it. Divide your dough into either, 6, 8 pieces or even 12 for dinner rolls or for mini burgers- I just can’t call them sliders, I’m a middle aged English, English teacher after all!

Shape your dough by tucking any staggly ends in and putting your cupped hands round it and burling the dough around to make a ball. (If I’m making burger buns  I’ll flatten them out a bit). Place them on a baking tray lined with baking parchment.
Leave to rise, they should nearly double in size. Depending on how warm your kitchen is this could be between 30 to 60 minutes.

While your rolls are proving preheat your oven to  220 °c \ 210 fan

When the rolls look nicely puffed up put them in your preheated oven. Your looking for quite a dark bake this should take between 10-14 minutes.

Take the rolls and place them on a cooling tray. Leave for at least 20 minutes before you eat them.

We’ve just had our burgers and they were even better than usual. Just settling down for the evening to start watching the box set of Twin Peaks. Started it last night but we fell asleep hope we have more success tonight. Tomorrow I’ll just have to tackle Niela’s buttocks!!

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Getting back into the swing of things.

After several months of not feeling like making bread,  resulting in a nearly empty freezer, I’ve got back into the baking habit. Yesterday I thought it was time to have another look at some of my many bread making books. My collection just keeps on growing, this one click shopping is just too easy. I wanted to make a range of breads, savoury, everyday, and something a little richer for Sunday breakfast.

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I made a large batch of sourdough for toasting and to keep the family going while I concentrated on the less practical breads. The savoury bread was the first one to grab my attention – onions and caraway could it work? Maybe so. For this one I more or less made the New York Deli Rye that features in Peter Reinhardt’s ‘The Baker’s Apprentice’. That loaf didn’t last long- hence no photos. Next time I’ll try and get some photographs of the breadmaking stages. That’s going to be fun, I could will probably end  with a camera all gunged up with dough.

A bread that I had never heard of, until I began making bread, was challah. It is normally eaten on the Sabbath in Jewish households. It is delicious and it is really straightforward to make. It’s not as rich as a brioche and not as messy to make. It also looks pretty amazing. It rises spectacularly when you’re proving it and even more so in the oven. It also delicious as toast, if there is any left it makes wonderful Pain Perdu, Eggy Bread or Gypsy Toast; whichever name you call it using challah makes it truly scrumptious. If I’m feeling good I’ll add some fresh berries along side it as well. It also makes a wonderful base for a chocolate chip bread pudding. Recipe for this can be found in Nigella’s Kitchen I think. It’s worth looking up.

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Now back to the main event how to make challah. From these quantaties I made the large loaf and four crescent rolls, these are destined for Sunday’s breakfast with some homemade lemon curd. The large loaf will be put in the freezer for a rainy day, i.e. a day when I don’t feel like making much for breakfast but want to seem as though I have. I find these days occur more often in the holidays, definitely after Up- Helly- Aa (the Shetland fire festivals held in the first few months of the year)

Don’t be put off by the lengthy instructions, they’re just very detailed.

Ingredients

900g strong white bread flour,
1 tbsp salt,
2 packets of instant dried yeast, 14g
250 ml tepid water
250 ml tepid milk
3 tbsp sunflower oil
2 large eggs, lightly mixed
3 tbsp caster sugar
1 beaten egg for egg wash.
Poppy or sesame seeds for decoration

In a large bowl, mix the yeast with the warm milk and water, add the eggs, oil and sugar and lightly mix together.
Add the salt to the flour and stir to combine
Add the flour gradually to the yeasty mixture, a couple of large handfuls at a time. At first it will be quite lumpy but it will become smoother as you add more flour.
Stir for a couple of minutes, don’t worry the mixture will look quite scruffy and will be quite sticky.
Cover your bowl with cling film or a damp tea towel and leave in at room temperature for about 20 mins.
Lightly flour your work surface and gently tip your dough out.
Rinse your bowl and lightly coat it with a flavourless oil.
Give your dough a light knead, no more than a minute is needed. If the dough is really sticky incorporate a little flour into it.  Gather the dough into a ball and place it into the oiled bowl, cover it and leave your dough for another twenty minutes.
Gently knead your dough and place it back in the bowl leave for another twenty minutes  and do a final brief knead. Form your dough into a ball place it back in your oiled bowl and cover again.
Return to your dough in about an hour it should have doubled in size, if it hasn’t leave it for a while longer till it has.
Divide your dough into two large pieces.
Place one of the pieces back in your bowl and cover it.
Challah is normally braided, if you don’t feel up to doing a complicated plait, just divide this piece of dough into two- these will be the strands of your braid. Roll and stretch each strand until its about 25 – 30cms.  Pinch the two stands together at one end. Twist the two stands together. You can now place this on an oiled baking tray,  coil it onto a crown or carefully place it in a 900g loaf tin with the ends neatly tucked underneath. Do the same with the other piece of dough. If you feel like doing something fancier go for either 3, 4, or 6 strand braids. I won’t add instructions but if you need some help look for Tori Avey’s online tutorial.
Turn your oven on to 200°c\ 180°c fan oven 400°f
Carefully cover your dough with either oiled cling film or a damp cloth. Leave your dough until it has doubled on size, probably about 40 mins. Wash your loaves with the beaten egg. Use a soft brush to lightly coat the loaves. Sprinkle with the seeds.
Bake the bread  for 35 mins then rotate the pan bake  for another  10 – 25 mins. The bread should be nicely golden and sound hollow when gently tapped. If you use a probe thermometer it should be 85-90°c in the middle.
Cool on a wire rack and try to wait half an hour before slicing and sampling.

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This is what we will be having on Sunday with a section of jams and some nice butter. If you have a go at making this I’m sure you’ll love it as much as we do.

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