Would you believe that this is the first loaf I have made in about 6 weeks? We were away in early August, then Ed was away at Cowes week, then we had dishwashergate… Until I set to and started making this loaf I had not realised how much I had missed the ritual of making bread.
We are currently halfway through the soil association’s organic September, and it seems fitting that my first loaf in a while was made with organic flour from Pimhill farm (a stone’s throw from where Katie grew up) which Richard Mayall turned organic 63 years ago in 1949 – before the term organic was even in use! I met his daughter, Ginny, at the recent Speciality Food Fair and we chatted about the farm, her father Richard, who is pictured – leaping with joy – on every packet.
I usually let my dough rise in the K-Mix bowl, but I needed the mixer for cakes so used one of my new set of stainless steel bowls from Judge. Although I do like my vintage Mason Cash bowl, these stainless steel bowls are undeniably more practical, as they are very lightweight but still sturdy, easy to clean, easy to stack and store and are break (but not dent) proof if you drop them. I suspect they would also double up well as a set of drums for a small child, but this is probably not recommended unless you have ear plugs! (There are 3 sizes available 22, 26, 30cm – prices around£11 for the largest)
- 300 ml warm water
- 1 heaped tsp yeast dried active – I used the one for hand baking
- 225 g organic wholemeal flour
- 225 g strong white bread flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbs oil – olive / rapeseed / hemp etc
- Pour the water into bowl, add the yeast and swirl until it is dissolved. Add the other ingredients.
- Knead with the dough hook attachment of your mixer on the lowest speed for about 4 minutes until a smooth stretchy dough has formed (if you knead by hand it will take longer).
- Cover with cling film and leave in a warm place for a few hours or in the fridge overnight. It should more than double in size.
- In the morning turn out onto a floured board and gently knock the dough back. Shape the loaf, place in an oiled and floured 1lb loaf tin. Leave somewhere warm until doubled in size again.
- Place in a preheated oven at GM7 / 220C / 425F and bake for about 40 minutes. For a crustier loaf place a small dish of water in the oven under the loaf.
- When it is done it should turn out of the tin and sound hollow when tapped. It always takes longer to bake than you think it will, so my general rule of thumb is that if you are unsure give it another 5 mins.
Many thanks to Pimhill for my flour and Judge for my bowls.