Archive for the ‘Bread’ Category

Soda Bread

Posted on: March 16th, 2017 by Harriet Low No Comments

1.Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas6. Line a baking tray with baking parchment.

2. Put the flours, salt and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and mix well. Make a well in the centre and pour in half the buttermilk. Using your fingers or a round-bladed knife, draw the flour into the buttermilk. Continue to add the buttermilk until all the flour has been absorbed and you have a sticky dough. You may not need all the buttermilk – it depends on the flour you use.

3. Tip the dough out on to a lightly floured surface, shape it into a ball and flatten it slightly with the palm of your hand. It is important to work quickly, as once the buttermilk is added it begins to react with the bicarbonate of soda.

4. Put the dough on the baking tray. Mark into quarters with a large, sharp knife, cutting deeply through the loaf, almost but not quite through to the base. Dust the top with flour.

5. Bake for 30 minutes or until the loaf is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Leave to cool on a wire rack. Eat on the day of baking – or toast it the next day.

 

Photography by Peter Cassidy

Pancakes

Posted on: February 1st, 2017 by Harriet Low No Comments

Place the flour and salt in a mixing bowl.  Make a well in the middle and crack the eggs into it.  Using a wooden spoon begin to mix, incorporating the flour from the edge of the bowl.

As the mixture thickens gradually add the milk.  Mix well after each addition of milk and continue until all the milk is incorporated and you have a smooth batter.  Stir in the melted butter.

Heat your pan over a medium to high heat.  Pour a little oil onto a wad of kitchen paper and lightly wipe the base of the pan to grease it.

Pour a little batter into the middle of the pan, tip the pan from side to side and swirl the batter round until the base of the pan is covered. Cook for around 45 seconds then loosen the edge with a pallet knife and flip the pancake over,  cook the over side. The pancake should be golden brown.

Slide out of the pan onto greaseproof paper and repeat until all the batter is used.  Stack the pancakes between greaseproof paper until ready to use.

To serve top the pancake with your favourite filling, fold in half, then half again to make triangles or  simply roll them up.

Blinis

Posted on: June 10th, 2016 by Harriet Low No Comments

1.Heat 125ml of the milk so it’s just warm.

2. Place the plain and buckwheat flours into a mixing bowl. Add the salt, sugar and yeast and stir to combine. Add the warm milk and mix to form a stiff batter. Cover and leave to stand for 30 minutes.

3. Add the egg yolk and the remaining milk to form a thick batter.

4. Whisk the egg white until soft peaks form, then fold into the batter. The batter should be thick, but easily drop off the spoon.

5. Heat a frying pan and lightly oil the base. Add heaped teaspoons of the mixture to the pan and cook until small bubbles appear all over the surface of the blini. Turn over and cook the other side for about 1 minute until golden brown. Continue to cook in batches until all the batter is used up.

6. Serve with soured cream and smoked salmon.

 

Photography by Peter Cassidy

Corn Tortillas

Posted on: June 9th, 2015 by Harriet Low No Comments

1. Mix the masa harina and salt in a bowl. Add the water and olive oil, and mix with one hand until you get a smooth dough. This is tighter than a yeast dough and it feels quite crumbly; if it’s too dry, add a few extra drops of water. This dough is for rollling, rather than stretching.

2. Divide the dough into 18 equal pieces and shape into small balls. Cover loosely with cling film and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.

3. To shape, place a ball of dough between 2 layers of cling film and roll to flatten, give it a quarter-turn, then roll and turn again, to keep a round shape. Continue rolling and turning until you have a small 3-5mm thin round. Repeat with the rest of the dough. This is the easiest way to shape tortillas, but sometimes I simply bash them on a work surface with my hand to flatten them.

4. To cook the tortillas, lightly oil a heavy-based frying pan or flat griddle and place on a high heat. Cook the tortillas, a few at a time (depending on the size of your pan), for 1 minute or so on each side, keeping a close eye on them; you don’t want them to get too brown. Use a palette knife to push down any small bubbles that appear on the surface.

5. Once cooked, remove the tortillas from the pan and wrap in a clean tea towel to keep them soft and warm. Stack them as they are cooked and eat as soon as possible.

 

Oatmeal Drop Scones

Posted on: January 2nd, 2015 by Harriet Low No Comments

1.Mix the oatmeal with the buttermilk and leave to soak for a few hours or overnight.

2. Add the flour and bicarbonate of soda to the oatmeal mixture and stir until thoroughly combined. Mix in the honey and egg and then add enough milk to make a batter the consistency of double cream.

3. You’ll need to cook the drop scones in batches. Grease a flat griddle or a large heavy-based frying pan with a little oil and place over a medium-low heat.

4. When it is hot, drop spoonfuls of the batter onto the griddle, leaving enough room for them to spread and find their own level. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until bubbles appear on the surface and they are beginning to dry out around the edge, then turn them over and cook the other side.

5. Serve hot from the pan, with butter, honey, syrup or jam.

 

Photography by Peter Cassidy

Sourdough Starter

Posted on: January 20th, 2014 by Karl Hudson No Comments

Stage 1. Mix 500g of the flour with the apple and water. Tip this into an airtight container and mark the level on the outside of the container (so you can see whether the mix has risen). Cover and leave to ferment for 3 days.

Stage 2. After 3 days the mix should start to smell quite sweet, a bit like cider. It will be a little darker in colour and will have started to grow; it may also have some bubbles. Check the level against the mark you made on the outside to see how much it has grown. Discard half the mix and add another 250g bread flour and 170ml water – this is called ‘feeding’. Mix thoroughly in the bowl. Tip back into the container and leave for a further 2 days.

Stage 3. There should now be plenty of activity in the dough, indicated by lots of small bubbles. If there is nothing happening, look at the side of the container – you’ll be able to see whether the dough has risen and fallen by the smearing on the side. If it has risen and fallen, then it is active. If your starter is active but has sunk down in the tub and a layer of liquid has formed on top, then it is actually over-active. Stir in some more flour to return it to a thick consistency and leave for a day. It should regain the thick, bubbly texture you want. If there is no sign of rising on the container, and no bubbles, leave the dough for a couple more days.

Once your starter is active, discard half of it, as before, and mix in another 250g bread flour and enough water to return it to the consistency of a very wet, sloppy dough. This time leave it for 24 hours. If the starter begins to bubble within this time, then it is ready to use. Ideally, when you come to use it, you want to starter to be thick and bubbly. If you shake it, it should wobble like a jelly, without dropping down. When you put a spoon through it, it should be like a thick batter. If your starter is not bubbling, feed it again, following stage two, and leave it for a further 2 days.

If you are using your starter often, you can leave it at room temperature, feeding it at least every 3 days and whenever you take some to make bread. Simply stir in some strong white bread flour and enough water to return it to the consistency of a very wet dough, bearing in mind that you will need 500g starter for each recipe. Then leave it, covered, until it achieves that thick, bubbly, jelly-like stage. If you are making sourdough less often – say, once a month – then keep the starter, covered, in the fridge. This will slow down the activity and preserve it almost indefinitely, but you must let it come back to room temperature before use. If it seems to be inactive, give it a feed of fresh flour – the bacteria within it are living so they need feeding.