Breaduary number 2 boiiiiiiiii. If you’re not joe an haven’t a clue what Breaduary is, click here. This is my everyday white loaf. I’ve messed around with this recipe quite a bit and what I’ve ended with is just right. It’s a really soft bread with a crust that holds its own but isn’t too chewy. There’s no fat in this bread, I wanted it to be the most simple ingredients list I could make without compromising the texture and taste of the bread (lol it’s food critic Caitlin). Because there’s no butter, the crust needs some help to keep from becoming chewy and tough. The help is a tea towel. Wrapped around the bread as soon as it comes out the oven, it keeps in the steam given off by the bread as it cools and softens the crust. The only addition to flour, water, yeast and salt is 10g of sugar, you can leave it out but it gives it a beautiful slightly sweet taste and helps the bread last longer.
I make this bread in a 2lb / 9 x 5 x 2.5 inch loaf tin because I like the shape. You don’t need to use a loaf tin for this recipe, put the shaped dough onto a flour dusted baking tray and bake as stated in the recipe.
- 450g white bread flour
- 7g salt
- 7g (1 sachet) instant dried yeast
- 10g brown sugar, any kind
- 310ml warm water
- A little oil, any kind
Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Add the yeast and sugar and mix again. Pour in the water and mix together with a metal spoon to form a shaggy ball of dough with no dry flour at the bottom of the bowl.
Smear about half a teaspoon of oil onto your worksurface. Clearing the sides of the bowl, tip/scrape the dough out onto the lightly oiled surface. The dough will be lumpy and sticky, but hold off from adding any more flour.
Knead the dough for at least 10 mins until it is smooth, elastic and tacky (not sticky). Because the dough is quite a wet one you want to keep any contact you have with it firm and quick to avoid getting dough spread all over the counter and your hands. The best way to knead this dough is by picking it up and flipping it over so it lands with hard slap on the counter, folding it over itself (in half roughly) then turning it 90 degrees. Repeat this motion quickly. No need to be too precious about the exact movement, all you want to do is get the dough moving. Alternate this with whatever kind of kneading you like, but when the dough gets too sticky, go back to the slapping/folding motion and you’ll find the dough will become much easier to work with.
Very lightly oil the bowl used earlier. Put the kneaded dough in it. Cover the bowl with a tea towel or cling film. Place in a warm place for about an hour, until the dough has doubled in size.
Grease your loaf tin or flour your baking tray and set aside. Tip the risen dough out onto a lightly floured surface and flatten into a rectangle about the length of your loaf tin, (if your not using a loaf tin, make it any size you like). Roll up the dough tightly, tuck the ends slightly and place on the tray or in the tin. Cover with cling film or a tea towel and place back in the warm place until doubled in size again, about 45 mins. Pre heat the oven to 180 (fan oven) / 200 (non fan oven).
When the bread is doubled in size dust it with a little flour and bake for 35 – 40 mins, until the crust is a light golden brown.
When the bread comes out the oven take it out the tin/off the baking tray straight away and wrap it up in a tea towel (maybe use a clean one…?). Let it cool a little for 30 mins before cutting your slice. As I said this bread (and any bread) keeps much better wrapped in its tea towel.
Thanks Sue, Jess and Tiger for eating all of my experiment breads xoxoxo Caitlin x