After attending a bread making class early on last year, and with all good intention to start baking my own bread, it is only now (more than a year later), by request of a yoga teacher I was catering at her retreat for to make home-made bread, that I have started to play around with some bread recipes and see how I can create some truly delicious breads.
After many tries and learning from about 7 different recipes, I feel I have finally mastered a simple recipe to create bread rolls, focaccia and small loaves. Please try these and let me know how you get on.
500g strong bread flour (can be white or wholemeal)
2 tsp yeast
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp sugar (I used caster sugar for white bread and coconut sugar for wholemeal)
300ml luke warm water (I mix 100ml just boiled water with 200ml cold water)
3 tbsp oil (I use olive oil)
Extra oil for brushing on top before baking
- For focaccia I add a tsp of mixed herbs when mixing the dough and for the topping I keep aside 1/4 cup sliced black olives and a few sprigs of fresh rosemary with some additional sprinkling of sea salt and olive oil before baking
- In a large bowl add all the dry ingredients and mix well. Made a well in the middle.
- Add the water and oil and bring together with a spoon before getting in with your hands
- Knead the dough for about 5 minutes until the mixture comes together into a ball
- Leave the dough in the bowl in a warm corner of your kitchen and cover with a clean cloth for at least an hour (the longer the better)
- After an hour, knead the dough again for another 5 minutes and leave covered for an additional 30 minutes (the longer the better)
- Once the dough is ready to be baked, grease a baking tin
- Pre-heat oven to 200C at this point
- Depending on the style of bread you want to make will depend how you roll out the dough, please see below:
- This amount of dough will make 2 small bread loaves. Half the dough and shape into round loaf. Put on the baking tin, brush the top with some oil and score (with a knife) 2 lines at the top of each loaf. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes
- This amount will make 9 rolls. Cut the dough into 9 equal balls and shape before putting onto baking tray. Once on baking tray, brush the top with some oil and score (with a knife) 2 lines at the top of each loaf. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Optional toppings: add nuts and seeds as desired.
- This amount will make a large focaccia. Using a baking tray (16(H) x 370(L) x 257(W)mm) flatten the dough out to about an inch thickness, pushing the dough out with your fingers (to leave finger indents in the top – not holes) and tope with the black olives and rosemary. Sprinkle some sea salt on the top and drizzle with a little olive oil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.