Baking Cooking

95 to go

23/01/2013

This absolutely, definitely, categorically does not mean that I’ve accepted any sort of challenge at all.  Maybe.

I’m just enjoying my Christmas presents and knocking up a few loaves of bread along the way.  Nothing to see, moving along.

Well, actually there are some loaves of bread. All courtesy of 100 Great Breads.

#3 Farl (page 31)

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Gorgeous to look at, gorgeous to eat.  This one was a definite hit.  I cooked to the recipe more or less, only substituting dried yeast for the fresh stuff. 
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The original recipe was for 20g of fresh yeast so I used 14g of dried as Mr Hollywood suggests reducing the amount by a quarter if you don’t have fresh yeast but that’s still double what I’d usually put in a 1lb loaf so I’m quite tempted to try again with half and a longer proving time.  There certainly wouldn’t be any complaints from the family for a repeat, it made a good base for scrambley eggs on toast and excellent ham sandwiches thus fulfilling all imaginable bread requirements, at least as far as we’re concerned.

#4 Guinness and Treacle Bread (page 28)

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I had treacle, I bought Guinness, I completely forgot to check the cupboard for wholemeal flour until I’d started baking.  I really thought I had some but it turned out to be self-raising and whilst it’s possible to fudge plain flour to be self-raising with a bit of baking powder and bicarb, I’ve yet to hear of any method of un-self-raising the self-raising (if you know, please to shout out in the comments).
What I did unearth at the back of the flour shelf was half a packet of wholemeal spelt flour, and in it went, topped up with a little strong white bread flour to make up the weight.  This is accordingly a mere approximation of the intended loaf.
It tasted, to quote H, “a little like Christmas”.  We’re not quite sure why, possibly the treacle gives a hint of gingerbread, but it is good hearty bread, full to the brim of girders and railings and other things that are full of iron.

Perhaps I should just tell you that this picture

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was supposed to be of a nicely buttered slice with the loaf in the background, but as you can see, a little hand got there first.

#5 Irish Soda Bread (page 24 – yes I do seem to be working backwards)

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Much as I like pummelling the day’s stresses into a ball of dough, there is something incredibly satisfying about a loaf that you make by shoving the ingredients in a bowl, stirring, shaping roughly and then baking. 
 
One word of caution on this particular recipe; do use the metric measurements for the liquids, the translation to imperial has gone a little awry as two measurements of 1/4 pint are not the same as one of 200ml and one of 150ml and it’s a little dry if you only add 1/2 pint of fluid.
This soda bread tastes slightly scone-like and was perfect with a big bowl of soup.  I’ve just got one question, why is it a soda bread when there isn’t a smidgen of bicarb anywhere to be seen?

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  • Stasher 25/01/2013 at 1:45 pm

    Great Bakes…looking forward to seeing more. Just imagine how many different loaves you’ll be baking in the years to come. With digital photography and the internet its easy to keep tract. I’ve been baking for over 40 years….since before the advent of all of this.