I’ve only just started baking bread. My first one, a granary loaf, wasn’t entirely successful. So I thought I’d go for a simple wholemeal this time. I found a very easy Delia recipe and tried it out and I was very pleasantly surprised by the result!
570g/1 lb 4 oz 100% organically produced wholewheat flour, plus a little extra for the top of the bread
2 level tsp salt
1 level tsp soft light brown sugar
2 level tsp easy-blend dried yeast
about 400ml/14 fl oz hand-hot water
You will need a 2 lb (900g) loaf tin, well buttered.
Pre-heat the oven to its lowest setting.
Begin by warming the flour slightly in the oven for about 10 minutes, then turn the oven off for now.
Tip the warm flour into a large mixing bowl and add salt, sugar and easy-blend yeast.
Mix these together thoroughly, make a well in the centre and pour in the hand-hot water.
Then take a wooden spoon and begin to mix the warm liquid into the flour gradually to form a dough.
Finish off by mixing with your hands until you have a smooth dough that leaves the bowl clean.
Now transfer the dough to a flat surface and stretch it out into an oblong, then fold one edge into the centre and the other over that.
Now fit the dough into the tin, pressing it firmly all round the edges so that the top will already be slightly rounded.
Next, sprinkle the surface with a generous dusting of flour, then cover the tin with a damp, clean tea cloth.
Leave to rise in a warm place for 30-40 minutes or at room temperature for about an hour.
Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 200°C, 400°F, gas mark 6. When the dough has risen to the top of the bread tin or tins, bake the bread for 40 minutes.
When the bread is cooked, turn it out on to a cloth to protect your hands – it will sound hollow when rapped underneath with your knuckles. Then return the bread, out of its tin, upside down to the oven for a further 5-10 minutes to crisp the base and sides.
Cool the bread on a wire rack.
As you can imagine, when the bread is in the oven, your home smells amazing! And there is nothing quite like a slice of your very own, home-made bread with butter. Delicious.