9. All kinds of Breads recipes
500 ml flour
125 g butter
2 eggs, beaten
4 bananas, mashed
250 ml sugar
7.5 ml baking powder
5 ml bicarbonate of soda
1 ml salt
60 ml water
Cream butter and sugar together. Add mashed bananas and beat well. Add beaten eggs.
Sift the flour and salt and add to the mixture with bicarb dissolved in the water. Lastly add the baking powder. Spoon batter into a greased and lined loaf pan.
Bake in a moderate oven (180 C) for about an hour.
800 g strong bread flour, plus extra for dusting
1 x 7 g sachet of dried yeast
100 g stale breadcrumbs
For the butter:
1 bulb of garlic
500 g unsalted butter, (at room temperature)
1 bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, (30g)
1 level teaspoon cayenne pepper
Put the flour, yeast and 1 teaspoon of sea salt into a large bowl and make a well in the middle. Gradually pour in 550ml of tepid water, continuously stirring and bringing in the flour from the outside as you go to form a rough dough. Transfer to a flour-dusted surface and knead for 10 minutes, or until smooth and springy. Place in a bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and prove in a warm place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, make the butter – this is a big batch, to make good use of your time, and you can freeze the extra for rainy days. Use a garlic crusher to crush the garlic into the softened butter, finely grate over the zest of ½ a lemon, finely chop and add the parsley (stalks and all), the cayenne and a pinch of salt, then mix it all together. Remove one quarter to use in this recipe, then place the rest on a sheet of greaseproof paper, roll it up into a log and twist the ends like a Christmas cracker, then pop into the freezer. After 30 minutes, get the butter out and slice it up to pre-portion, then re-roll and return to the freezer, where it will keep very happily for up to 6 months.
Spread one third of your soft butter portion all around the base and sides of a large metal tray (25cm x 35cm), then scatter in the breadcrumbs and shake around into an even layer so they stick to the butter. Divide up the dough into 35 pieces, then, one-by-one, roll each one into a ball and place in the tray in rows – 5 balls across and 7 balls long is perfect. Bomb over another third of the soft butter, in and around the balls. Leave to prove for another 1 hour 30 minutes, or until doubled in size again.
Preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5. Sprinkle the balls with a little salt, then bake on the bottom shelf of the oven for 30 minutes, or until lovely and golden. Bomb over that final third of your soft butter and spread it around to give the bread a beautiful shine.
Zucchini, potato & cheddar bread
500g new potatoes
500g strong flour
7g sachet dried yeast
85g strong cheddar (or vegetarian alternative), grated
few thyme sprigs
2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
Boil the potatoes in salted water until just tender, drain and allow to cool a little. Put the flour and yeast into a large bowl. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, coarsely grate half straight into the mix, tossing occasionally to coat in the flour. This will stop the potatoes sticking in clumps.
Grate in half the Zucchini, add half of the cheese and strip in half of the thyme leaves. Add 1 tbsp olive oil mixed with
175-200ml hand-warm water. Bring the dough together and knead for a couple of mins. Put into a lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size.
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Grease a 20cm x 30cm tin. Push the bread dough into the tin firmly, pushing out air. Finely slice the remaining potatoes and Zucchini. Scatter over the top along with the remaining thyme and poke in roughly with your fingers so the slices stick out a little. Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise again for about 45 mins. Drizzle with the rest of the olive oil, scatter with the remaining cheese, then cook for 50 mins-1 hr, until well risen and golden. Leave to cool, then serve, cut into squares.
Red onion & rosemary Italian bread
1 batch white bread dough
5 tbsp olive oil
2 large red onions, sliced
handful rosemary sprigs
1 tsp sea salt flakes
Make the basic dough, adding 2 tbsp olive oil and only a pinch of salt. While the dough is rising, cook onions in 1 tbsp
olive oil for 5 mins until soft, then set aside.
When the dough has risen, knock it back and stretch it to fit an oiled Swiss roll tin about 25 x 35cm. Leave the dough to prove for about 20 mins.
Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Spread the onions over the dough and scatter with the rosemary. Press your fingers into the dough to make dimples, drizzle the remaining oil over and scatter over the salt, then bake for 30 mins until golden. Leave to cool, then serve cut or torn into squares.
200g rye flour, plus extra for dusting
200g strong white or wholemeal flour
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
½ tsp fine salt
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp caraway seed (optional)
Tip the flours, yeast and salt into a bowl. In a jug, mix the honey with 250ml warm water, pour the liquid into the bowl and mix to form a dough. Rye flour can be quite dry and absorbs lots of water, if the dough looks too dry add more warm water until you have a soft dough Tip out onto your work surface and knead for 10 mins until smooth. Rye contains less gluten than white flour so the dough will not feel as springy as a conventional white loaf.
Place the dough in a well oiled bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1-2 hrs, or until roughly doubled in size. Dust a 2lb/900g loaf tin with flour.
Tip the dough back onto your work surface and knead briefly to knock out any air bubbles. If using caraway seeds work these in to the dough. Shape into a smooth oval loaf and pop into your tin. Cover the tin with oiled cling film and leave to rise somewhere warm for a further 1 – 1.5 hr, or until doubled in size.
Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Remove the cling film and dust the surface of the loaf with rye flour. Slash a few incisions on an angle then bake for 30 mins until dark brown and hollow sounding when tapped. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and leave to cool for at least 20 mins before serving
Seeded wholemeal loaf
400g strong wholemeal bread flour
100g spelt flour
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
1 tbsp black treacle
oil, for greasing
50g mixed seeds (we used pumpkin, sunflower, poppy and linseeds)
1 egg yolk, loosened with a fork
Combine both flours in a large bowl with the yeast and 1 tsp fine salt. Mix the treacle with 250ml warm water until well combined. Stir into the flour to make a slightly sticky dough. If you need to add more water, splash it in 1 tbsp at a time.
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 10 mins (or in a tabletop mixer for 5-7 mins). Your dough should be smooth and elastic when it’s ready. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, flip the dough over to coat it in oil, then cover with a sheet of oiled cling film. Leave in a warm place until doubled in size – this will take about 1 hr (see note, below). Lightly oil a 900g loaf tin.
Once doubled in size, knead the dough again for 3-5 mins to knock out the air bubbles – add most of the seeds and work these into the dough as you knead. Shape the dough into an oval roughly the same length as your tin. Place in the tin and leave to prove, covered with oiled cling film, for 30-45 mins until it has nearly doubled in size again. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
Gently press a finger into the loaf to check if it has had enough proving time (see tip). When it’s ready, glaze the top of the loaf with the egg yolk and sprinkle over the remaining seeds. Bake in the oven for 40-45 mins until golden brown – if you tip the loaf out of the tin and tap the bottom, it should sound hollow. Leave to cool on a wire rack for at least 30 mins before slicing.
Malted walnut seed loaf
500g strong wholemeal flour (we used Doves Farm mixed grain malthouse bread flour)
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
1 tsp salt
up to 350ml warm water
100g mixed seeds (we used a mix of linseeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds)
50g walnut pieces
a little sunflower oil, for greasing
Make the dough with the flour, yeast, salt and water as stated in the 'Goes well with' recipe (see right), adding most of the seeds and all the walnuts as you knead the dough. Leave to rise in a clean bowl as stated, then knock back and shape into a large round. Roll the round in the remaining seeds, then lift the bread onto a tray to prove for about 30 mins until doubled in size.
Heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Bake the bread for 15 mins, then reduce the heat to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5 and continue to bake for 30 mins until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Leave the bread on a cooling rack to cool completely. The loaf will stay fresh in an airtight container for 3 days or can be frozen for 1 month.
Easy white bread
500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tsp salt
7g sachet fast-action yeast
3 tbsp olive oil
Mix the flour, salt and yeast in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre, then add the oil and water, and mix well. If the dough seems a little stiff, add 1-2 tbsp water, mix well then tip onto a lightly floured work surface and knead. Once the dough is satin-smooth, place it in a lightly oiled bowl. Leave to rise for 1 hour until doubled in size or place in the fridge overnight.
Line a baking tray with baking parchment. Knock back the dough, then gently mould the dough into a ball. Place it on the baking parchment to prove for a further hour until doubled in size.
Heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Dust the loaf with flour and cut a cross about 6cm long into the top of the loaf with a sharp knife. Bake for 25-30 mins until golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped underneath. Cool on a wire rack.
250ml warm water
2 tsp dried yeast (not fast-action)
3 tbsp warm milk
2 tbsp golden caster sugar
450g strong flour, plus extra for dusting
4 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs, plus 1 beaten egg, for glazing
sesame seeds, for sprinkling
Mix the warm water, yeast, warm milk and sugar in a bowl. Let it stand for 5 mins until it becomes frothy – this is how you know the yeast is working. Tip the flour and 1 tsp salt into a large mixing bowl, add the butter and rub together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Make a well in the centre of the buttery flour and add the warm yeast mixture and the eggs.
Use your hands to mix it into a sticky dough – don’t worry if the mixture feels a little wet at this stage, it will come together when kneading. Tip the dough out onto a floured work surface. Knead the dough for 10 mins by stretching it on the work surface – it will still be very sticky at this stage but don’t be tempted to add too much flour.
The dough is ready when it feels soft and bouncy – this means that the gluten strands have developed. Place in an oiled bowl, cover with cling film and set aside to rise for 1-3 hrs or until doubled in size.
Once the dough has doubled in size, knock the air out and knead again for 2 mins. The dough should be much less sticky now, but add a little flour if it needs it.
Divide the dough into 12-16 even pieces. Roll into balls and arrange on lined baking trays. Loosely cover with oiled cling film and leave for about 1 hr or until doubled in size again. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and place a shallow baking tray at the bottom. Uncover the trays, brush the buns with egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Pour a cup of water into a baking tray at the bottom of the oven to create steam. Bake for 20 mins or until golden, then leave to cool on a wire rack.
Hot cross buns
200 ml semi-skimmed milk
55 g unsalted butter
2 x 7 g sachet dried yeast
455 g strong bread flour, plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ whole nutmeg
55 g caster sugar
2 pieces stem ginger
1 large free range egg
2 tablespoons plain flour
55 g sultanas or raisins
30 g dried cranberries
2 tablespoons mixed peel
runny honey, to glaze
When it comes to Easter, you can't beat indulging in a lovely, sticky hot cross bun. Give this recipe a go – I promise you'll never buy the shop bought versions again.
1. Add the milk and 50ml water to a small pan and place over a low heat for a few minutes, or until slightly warm – you should be able to dip your finger in without scalding it.
2. Meanwhile, add the butter to a separate pan and place over a low heat for a few minutes, or until melted, then set aside.
3. Transfer the warmed milk mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the yeast. Set aside.
4. Sift the flour into a large bowl, then add the salt, spices, a few good scrapings of nutmeg and the sugar. Finely chop the stem ginger and stir it into the mix.
5. Make a well in the centre and pour in the melted butter, followed by the yeast mixture. In a separate bowl, beat the egg and add it to the bowl.
6. Using a fork, mix well until you have a rough dough, then transfer to a clean flour dusted work surface and knead for around 10 minutes, or until soft and springy.
7. Return the dough to a flour dusted bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for at least an hour, or until doubled in size.
8. Transfer the dough to a clean flour dusted work surface. Knock the air out by bashing it with your fist, then sprinkle over the dried fruit and mixed peel and knead into the dough for 1 to 2 minutes.
9. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5. Grease and line a large baking tray.
10. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and roll each into balls. Evenly space them out on a lined baking tray as you go.
11. Cover with the tea towel and leave in a warm place for a further 30 minutes, or until doubled in size.
12. Meanwhile, place the plain flour and 2 tablespoons water into a small bowl and mix to a thick paste.
13. Gently pat down the risen buns then use the batter to carefully trace a cross over the top with a piping bag or spoon.
14. Place the buns into the preheated oven for 15 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
15. Transfer to a wire cooling rack, brush over a little honey and leave to cool.
16. Slice open the sticky hot cross buns, spread with a little butter and serve – delicious