Despite my very first job, at the tender(ish) age of 16 being that of a weekend bakery assistant at a now bankrupt & defunct chain of Scottish bakeries, my skill in baking bread has never met the standards installed upon me back then. Which is most likely due to my lack of patience for the kneading, proving, quadruple checking baking and associated palaver associated with good artisan bread making, I also refuse to invest in a bread making machine.
My homemade bread, and much that I’ve tasted (esp. those made in bread makers) are often too doughy and much to heavy, but after a bit of trial and (rather too much) error, I now have an easy method to follow for a light wholemeal loaf.
- 1 teaspoon dried yeast
- 1 teaspoon caster sugar
- 300ml warm water
- 400g wholemeal flour
- Preheat Oven to 200ºC
- Mix yeast and sugar and stir in 25ml of the warm water.
- Place 200g of the flower into a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre, add the yeast mixture & remaining warm water.
- Combine and gradually add remaining flour (I used a fork to combine), when well combines (ie no longer sticky) use hands to combine further.
- Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes (don’t scrimp on this part).
- Place well kneaded and shaped dough into a well oiled loaf tin, then cover with a (clean) heated tea towel and place in a warm place for 30 minutes (or until dough has visibly risen to double its size).
- Bake in the oven for 40 – 45 minutes.
- Check loaf is ready by tapping it withe the rear of a spoon, if it sounds hollow, it’s ready.
- Allow to cool before cutting and serving.