Out of laziness, I made bread. I couldn’t be bothered leaving the house in the wind/rain/sleet/snow to go to the shops just for a loaf of (probably stale) bread.
It was so good, I keep making it! It’s so easy and so very, very tasty! You don’t need a breadmaker (ours is broken anyway) and it only takes one hundred minutes or so from when you begin mixing the ingredients until you pull the browned, fresh, fragrant loaf from the oven!
300ml warm water
2 level teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey (you could use sugar instead)
2 teaspoons olive oil
500g bread flour (we use multigrain but you can use wholemeal or white)
1 teaspoon salt
Extra flour for kneading
Lightly grease a loaf pan. Get your ingredients, mixing bowl etc ready.
Activate the yeast by adding it to the warm water, oil and honey. Stir well. Leave in a warm spot for ten minutes or so, until it’s frothy on the top.
Mix the salt and the flour.
Add the yeast mixture to the flour mixture. Stir well. Keep stirring until all ingredients are combined well.
Tip the mixture onto a lightly floured board. With floured hands, begin kneading the dough. I find I need to add extra flour when kneading as it is quite sticky (which makes me wonder if I should add less water next time…)
Keep kneading until the bread is less sticky and more silky. It will feel lovely and will be a pleasure to knead. Make jokes with you children about kneading bread and talk about homophones for a while.
Shape your dough and place it in the greased loaf tin. Cover with greased plastic wrap and leave it in a warm spot for an hour or so – it should double in size at least.
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees. We cook our bread in the woodstove on the ‘hot’ to ‘very hot’ setting.
With a knife, make even slashes on top of the dough. Put the pan in the oven and cook for 30 minutes or until the laud has risen and is golden brown.
Tip the loaf out onto a cooling rack and allow to cool – or eat it warm!! A rule of thumb is that if you knock the bread on the bottom if the loaf, it will sound hollow if it is ready.