Wednesday, October 29, 2008
I've baked bread about 4 times in the last months or so. I guess its not as hard as i thought it would be. Ok so sometimes it doesnt come out so perfect but still its edible... and seriously it never turned out BADDD. I still need to buy proper baking trays... i use the disposable type. I dont think it distributes the heat well... so the top cooks fast and the bottom remains white. I usually have to remove it from the pan and flip it over and bake it an extra 10 mins or so.
If you havent tried baking bread. I think you really should. Try it. Even if its just once. The basic recipe i started out with can be found here Fabulous french bread
Here is my version.
Makes 1 big loaf
* 1 1/4 - or a little more, mugs warm water (warmer than room temp)
* 1.5 tsp sugar
* 1 tsp salt
* 1.5 tablespoon olive oil
* 3ish mugs flour - approx 500gms (i mix half white with whole grain/wheat)
* 1 packet instant dry yeast
* flour (for dusting counter top)
* 1 egg, beaten lightly (to brush top of bread)
1 tsp total of any of these combined rosemary/oregano, basil, thyme, sesame
Half tsp garlic powder
Pour warm water into a large, warm mixing bowl.
Stir in sugar, salt, oil, flour, and yeast. (if its too soft, add a tbs of flour or if too dry a little warm water.
Mix well for about 2 mins. Add herbs and mix lightly.
Allow dough to rest 10 minutes; then stir down.
Repeat 3 times.
Remove from bowl onto floured surface. Knead lightly. Flatten and roll up into desired shape - i usually place into baking pan, but i guess you could just shape it into a roll and onto a lightly greased tray ala frech loaf. Keep in a warm place cover with teatowel - I store it in a lightly preheated oven, cause its about 18C here) - be careful not to have the heat up too hot or else it either will rise too high/ quickly or.. who knows.. I guess a good temp is if you have a room temp of 30-32C, it good enough. Dont do silly tricks like the oven thing like i do.
Leave it to rise for about 40 mins. (it should double in size - at least)
Cut a few slashes on top and brush with beaten egg. optional sprinkle with sesame
Bake in preheated oven 210C for 10 mins. Then lower heat to 175C and bake for 20-25 mins (if its in a small french loaf shape it may take less than if it was in a baking pan). Check regularly. I usually have to remove from tin and flip it and bake the bottom for another 5-10 mins. Make sure its nice browned all around.
Remove and leave to cool. Remove from pan to cool and let it air... cover with teatowel.