There is something to be said for simple when it comes to baking. A simple madeira cake is delicious, sliced thickly and eaten whilst sipping a good cup of tea, just as a simple slice of day old bread dropped into the toaster and spread with good butter is, simply perfect!
So in the hustle and bustle of every day life why is it white bread that dominates the bread basket when a loaf of simple brown bread is the perfect, tasty treat? I am guilty of having a white bread family, so this loaf was just the reminder I needed that in fact home-baked brown bread is in fact, perfect!
The recipe actually called for half wholemeal flour and half white flour. This gave the loaf great colour and flavour but was in the middle enough to convince my white bread family to give it a go.
EASY BROWN BREAD
- 300g All Purpose flour
- 300g Wholemeal flour
- 25g vegetable fat or vegetable oil
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. fast action dried yeast
- 375ml hand hot water
- Grease a 900g loaf tin or a baking sheet (I did a baking sheet and shaped the loaf into a ball and placed in the baking sheet- feel free to do either)
- Combine the flours in a large mixing bowl. Rub in the fat (see below if using oil rather than fat) and stir in the sugar, salt and yeast. Make a well in the centre (add the oil at this point, if using), and pour in the water. Gradually incorporate the dry ingredients, mixing to a soft dough. Use your hands to bring the last crumbs together.
- Shape the dough into an oblong if using the loaf pan, or a circle if using the baking sheet. Lay n the sheet with the seam on the bottom to help the loaf keep a good shape as it rises and bakes. Using a sharp knife, make cuts in the top of the loaf- try a long one all the way along the top of a loaf in a loaf tin or a cross on a circle loaf in a baking sheet. Place the loaf in an oiled polythene bag or cover well with a tea towel and place in a warm place until doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 230 C/450 F.
- Bake the loaf for 30-35 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
And of course brown bread is healthier for you than white bread- yes, of course it is;