Every so often, I make bread. Now don’t get too giddy just yet, because, I don’t do the whole ‘mother earth’ thing and knead until I’m coming out in a small sweat, no, no, no, I have my outfit to think of. Although I was given the loveliest of aprons as part of a Christmas present from my big sister a couple of years ago, but I digress.
My favourite recipe is as follows: 14 fl oz of warm water taken from a kettle which has boiled recently, but not too recently. My rule of thumb is, if you could make a cup of tea with it and it doesn’t taste like dishwater, the water is too hot. Next I add two tablespoons of butter, although I have used olive oil and it is just as delicious and great for those who are lactose intolerant. The way I add my flour may seem a little kookie to you, but I tried doing it all in one go and it just didn’t taste the same. So, I add 10.5oz of strong plain white flour followed by another 10.5oz of the very same strong plain white flour. And here I must write about the flour.
I always use ‘Bradshaws, ORION high quality strong white flour which is grown, ground and bagged within a mile of where Big Dave lives. Big Dave is my dad. Every so often he will call me up and we arrange to rendezvous, him with a bag of flour, me with a bag of buns. I promise you it is the most loveliest of flours you will ever bake bread with. And, I believe, the secret ingredient.
On top of all that I put two teaspoons of sugar, two teaspoons of salt and two teaspoons of dried yeast.
It is all then put into the bread maker, popped onto the dough setting, and left to do its thing. I leave it for another ten minutes or so when the bread maker has finished, before putting onto a floured surface, kneading for moments, cutting into small circles and placing onto floured baking trays.
I then let the little plump circles of potential heaven, (a nod to Nigella there) rise for around fifteen minutes in a warm space with a tea towel over them and finally pop them into a warmed oven, gas mark 6, for around ten minutes. Remembering, of course, to remove the tea towel. You may think it would be impossible to forget, but trust me, in my ‘looks to camera’ moments, I almost have.
There is nothing quite like the smell of home cooked bread wafting around the kitchen. Except for perhaps, the taste of just cooked bread, buttered, with a glorious cup of tea. And sometimes, just sometimes, I add honey… delicious.
One goddess point for me I think, no?