RECIPE:: One Loaf of Bread, Please

March 12, 2015

 photo Loaf of bread.jpg

For ages now, the husband has been wanting to try making his own, homemade bread so last Monday he finally got all the ingredients together and spent the evening - yes, the whole evening - making bread. As it was his own little project I couldn't help but offer my criticisms advice as I watched from the sidelines and tidied up his mess as he went along.

 photo Yeast.jpg

As is to be expected with making bread, the recipe is pretty complicated. If it was easy then we wouldn't all just buy loaves of bread from the supermarket now, would we? I've done my best to make my steps as clear as possible, taking them from the recipe that we used from the BBC food website. We found our loaf of bread didn't rise quite as well as we had hoped but it was still completely edible, if a little too salty. I can't wait until the husband makes some more in the future with a few minor alterations to the recipe.

So if you attempt this, good luck!

  • 500g strong, white bread flour and a little extra for dusting
  • 40g butter, softened
  • 12g dried active yeast
  • 2tbsp salt (The bread ended up too salty so maybe it would be better with even half the amount of salt suggested here)
  • about 300ml of room temperature water
  • a little olive oil to grease the work top

 photo Yeast 2.jpg
 photo Flour.jpg

Step One:: Follow the instructions on the yeast tin to get it to react. Meanwhile, measure the bread flour and place it into a large mixing bowl and add the butter. Add the salt and the yeast to the flour. Make sure to add them into either side of the bowl as the salt will kill the yeast. Stir all the ingredients with a spoon.

 photo Mixture.jpg

Step Two:: Add approximately half (150ml) of the water and turn the mixture with your fingers, mixing all the ingredients together well. Keep adding a little more water at a time gradually until you have picture up all the flour from the bowl. Don't worry if you don't need all of the water - we didn't! Likewise, you may find that you need to add a little more. All I know is you are meant to end up with a dough that is well combines and soft, not sticky. Using your fingers keep going until the mixture becomes a rough dough. You can use the mixture to clean the inside of the bowl.

Step Three:: Lightly grease a clean work top using the olive oil. Turn out your dough onto the surface, making sure you have plenty of space. Fold the far edge of the dough into the middle, turn the dough by 45 degrees and repeat several times until the dough is very lightly coated all over with the oil.

Step Four:: Using your hands knead the dough. Push the dough out in one direction with the heel of your hand before folding it back on itself. Repeat this, turning the dough by 90 degrees this time instead of 45. Do this for 4 or 5 minutes until the dough becomes elastic in consistence, smooth and stretchy. If, at any point, the dough becomes sticky just add some more flour to your hands.

 photo Bread tin.jpg

Step Five:: Lightly grease your mixing bowl and return your dough to it. We covered it with a wet dish towel although you could use clingfilm which allows the mixture to "prove".  Leave the dough for about an hour during which it should double in size, it may take longer.

Step Six:: Once it has doubled and it is bouncy and shiny, it's time to shape it (or put it into a bread tin). Turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knock it back by kneading it firmly to "knock" out the air. This involved a whole lot of throwing the bread around from what I could see! Roll the dough up, turn 45 degrees and roll it up again, repeating many times, then add the the tin or shape into a round loaf.

Step Seven:: Cover with a tea towel or lightly oiled cling film and leave to prove again until it’s doubled in size. Depending on how warm your kitchen is it will take a further hour before the bread is ready to be cooked.

 photo Loaf of bread 2.jpg

Step Eight:: Preheat the oven to 200C if your oven is fan assisted and put an empty roasting tin in the bottom of the oven. Sprinkle some flour on top of the loaf and very gently rub it in.

Step Nine:: Put the loaf into the middle of the oven. Pour cold water into the empty roasting tin that you left in the oven when you switched it on. This will cause steam which helps to create a crisp, shiny crust. Bake for about 30 minutes. Once golden allow the bread to cool on a wire rack.


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  1. I remember when I made my own bread previously, I popped it into the the airing cupboard to rise haha :)

    Maybe this is why people like to buy bread makers too!

    1. That's a great place to get it to rise! It takes so long to do so but I really love the smell of freshly cooked bread so it sorta seems worth it.
      Debi x

  2. I made bread once when I was younger and it was a disaster! Definitely need to give it another go though. It's something I'd love to be good at. I want a bread maker too! x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

    1. I did say to the husband that we could see about getting a bread maker but he really wanted to do it all by hand. I think he enjoyed giving it a go and I'm sure he's going to be doing it again soon. Fingers crossed anyway,
      Debi x


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