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  • FIRST POST
    count rostov
    handmade bread
    • #1
    • 11th Apr 08, 2:09 PM
    handmade bread 11th Apr 08 at 2:09 PM
    I know that there are some real breadmaker fans on this board but I just can't see the point. The bread they make is just like shop bread...will I be crucified for saying that?
    I've always made my own bread (even when I was a student - so geeky). I don't bother kneading so it takes me about 10 minutes, including clearing up time. It has a crunchy crust and a very springy inside, with quite big holes. This is how I do it:
    Somewhere between a 1/2 and 3/4 of a bag of strong bread flour (I use all white, if you want brown bread I would recommend using 1/2 and 1/2 brown and white flour or the bread won't rise properly)
    dessert spoon dried yeast (or one sachet easy-blend and no sugar)
    teaspoon sugar
    handful pinenuts/sesame seeds/walnuts/sunflower seeds whatever (non-essential, is yummy without)
    teaspoon salt
    about 1 - 1/2 pints water

    1) mix sugar with about 1/2 pint of hand-hot water, whisk in yeast, leave in a warm place until about an inch of froth on top
    2) put flour, nuts/seeds, salt in a bowl, whisk the yeast mixture so the froth is amalgamated, stir into dry ingredients, then pour in probably about another 3/4 pint water, stirring all the time, until all the flour is mixed in and the mixture is very sticky, far too sticky to knead. Leave to prove in a warm place until roughly doubled in size.
    3) thoroughly grease a bread tin - I use butter as oil never makes a proper film and it's very annoying if the bread sticks
    4) Give the risen dough a brisk stir with a knife to knock the air out of it. Pour into bread tin. Leave somewhere warm until risen slightly above the top of the tin. Bake in a hot overn (200C or thereabouts) for about 1 hour
    5) Take it out of the tin and knock the bottom of the loaf. If it sounds hollow it's cooked, if not pop it back in the oven for another ten-fifteen minutes.

    If I'm in a hurry I use a sachet of easyblend yeast, put the mixture straight in the bread tin and just let it rise once.
    It's important to have somewhere warm for the bread to rise, I'm lucky enough to have an Aga but on top of a radiator/in an air cupboard is fine. The cooler the atmosphere, the longer it will take to rise. If you want to let it rise overnight, it will rise in the fridge!
    These quantities are really approximate as different brands of flours absorb different amounts of water. Basically the dough should be like a very very thick batter, or plaster just before it goes hard. It doesn't matter if it's wetter or dryer, you just need to cook it longer if it's very wet.
    This doesn't take long - I work full time and make a loaf every evening.

    What do other handbakers do? Would breadmaker fans ever be converted?
Page 1
    • thriftlady
    • By thriftlady 11th Apr 08, 5:11 PM
    • 9,089 Posts
    • 28,909 Thanks
    thriftlady
    • #2
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:11 PM
    • #2
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:11 PM
    I know that there are some real breadmaker fans on this board but I just can't see the point. The bread they make is just like shop bread...will I be crucified for saying that?
    Originally posted by count rostov
    I so agree with you.

    The big advantage of handbaking for me apart from superior taste and moneysaving is that I can bake four loaves at once.

    I've posted my recipe several times before- it's based on Delia's. I also use a no-knead wholemeal recip very similar to yours.

    Breadmakers -can't see the point
    • HariboJunkie
    • By HariboJunkie 11th Apr 08, 5:13 PM
    • 7,160 Posts
    • 45,822 Thanks
    HariboJunkie
    • #3
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:13 PM
    • #3
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:13 PM
    I have a BM but do prefer the taste of Hand made bread. Unfortuately I lack the strengh to do serious kneading so I now let the BM do that and the first rise and then I let it prove out of the BM and bake it in the oven.

    I still use the BM for a complete cycle if we run out of bread unexpectedly and the BM can make a loaf overnight for me.

    BMs are really about timesaving for most people I think.
    • morwenna
    • By morwenna 11th Apr 08, 5:16 PM
    • 843 Posts
    • 4,587 Thanks
    morwenna
    • #4
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:16 PM
    • #4
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:16 PM
    The big advatage to me of a breadmaker is the timer setting - when you leave the house at 7:30 am and don't return until 6:00 pm, knowing there is fresh bread in the BM and a stew in the SC is a lifesaver! However, I enjoy making bread in the conventional way and as I have been off this week, have enjoyed "baking up a storm!" (The kids have enjoyed it too!)
    • angelavdavis
    • By angelavdavis 11th Apr 08, 5:46 PM
    • 4,705 Posts
    • 7,325 Thanks
    angelavdavis
    • #5
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:46 PM
    • #5
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:46 PM
    I use my BM just for the mixing, proving and kneading processes. I don't like to cook my loaves in the BM - I tend to shape the dough into rolls and loaves.

    It's just convenience as I can work at my desk upstairs without worrying about forgetting about it!

    The buzzer reminds me that its motoring away downstairs.
    Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!
    • thriftlady
    • By thriftlady 11th Apr 08, 5:56 PM
    • 9,089 Posts
    • 28,909 Thanks
    thriftlady
    • #6
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:56 PM
    • #6
    • 11th Apr 08, 5:56 PM
    Ok, I can see the advantage of BMs for people who are out all day, but I'm not sure they save time. When I owned one it took 4 hours to make 1 loaf. Now I handbake 4 loaves in 3 hours.

    3 mins measuring out ingredients
    4 mins kneading (Count Rostov's recipe doesn't require kneading )
    2 hours rising -during which time you can go out and do your shopping or whatever you like.
    3 mins knocking back and shaping
    40 mins proving
    40 mins baking

    I wait for the loaves to cool then place in plastic bags and freeze. They seem to be easier to slice after a bit of frost

    I do this twice a week and those 8 loaves see my family of 5 through toast, sandwiches and bread with soup at weekend lunches. OH eats a fair bit toasted in the evening.

    I generally make a batch of 15 rolls as well (slightly different and quicker recipe - 2 hours 15 mins) which does OH and the kids 3 packed lunches.

    And no hole up the middle
    • Toonie
    • By Toonie 13th Apr 08, 8:35 AM
    • 735 Posts
    • 3,577 Thanks
    Toonie
    • #7
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:35 AM
    • #7
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:35 AM
    I'm considering making bread or at least bread rolls for the first time as the price of bread is becoming outrageous and really using up a lot of our food budget. Any tips or recipe suggestions as I will be doing it by hand?
    • CRANKY40
    • By CRANKY40 13th Apr 08, 8:47 AM
    • 3,367 Posts
    • 36,681 Thanks
    CRANKY40
    • #8
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:47 AM
    • #8
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:47 AM
    I've copied your method and will have a go at that. I have arthriris in one hand, so the kneading thing can be a bit hit and miss.
    • ifonlyitwaseasier
    • By ifonlyitwaseasier 13th Apr 08, 8:49 AM
    • 2,787 Posts
    • 20,347 Thanks
    ifonlyitwaseasier
    • #9
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:49 AM
    • #9
    • 13th Apr 08, 8:49 AM
    well i like using the bm, it does the hard work for me whilst i potter about doing everything else, or like today its on timer so when i get back from shopping it'll just need tipping out, split into two tins and then baking.

    and it is much easier for me to have the bm take the strain, then i have time to catch up with all the threads on here
    Nonny mouse and Proud!!
    Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level then beat you with experience
    !!
    Debtfightingdivaextraordinaire!!!!
    Amor et metus. Lac? Sugar? Quisque massa vel duo? (stolen from a lovely forumite!)

    • thriftlady
    • By thriftlady 13th Apr 08, 9:10 AM
    • 9,089 Posts
    • 28,909 Thanks
    thriftlady
    Soft bread rolls
    Soft bread rolls -makes about 15

    Mix in a large bowl

    1 lbs white bread flour
    lb wholemeal bread flour
    you can use all white flour if you want white rolls
    2 tsp sugar-optional
    2 tsp salt
    4 tsp easy-blend yeast Have since found 3 tsp is perfectly adequate. Might even be worth trying with less.

    Stir in

    pint hand-hot milk
    pint hand-hot water
    I generally use milk from the fridge and then top it up with just-boiled water

    Mix together to form a dough.

    Knead the dough for about 4 mins, until smooth and elastic.

    Cover with a damp cloth and leave to rise for 1 hours.

    Knock back (give it a good thump all over to knock the air out) and knead again a few times.

    Shape into rolls about the size of a cricket ball. Place them on greased baking trays (I get 15 on one very large tray, they spread a bit and join together so you have to tear them apart when baked).

    Leave covered with the damp cloth for 25 mins.

    If you want flattish bap-like rolls then press them down with your floured palm before putting in the oven.

    Bake at 210-220 c for 15-20 mins.

    If you want the tops to remain soft then cover the tray with a clean dry cloth as soon as they come out of the oven. Allow to cool.

    Rolls freeze well.
    Last edited by thriftlady; 13-10-2009 at 6:02 AM.
    • kate83
    • By kate83 13th Apr 08, 10:34 AM
    • 289 Posts
    • 374 Thanks
    kate83

    If I'm in a hurry I use a sachet of easyblend yeast, put the mixture straight in the bread tin and just let it rise once.
    Originally posted by count rostov
    How do you do it with the easy blend yeast?
    Is it just mix all dry ingredients and add about 1 1/4 pint water all at once - then continue as recipe?

    I normally use a bread maker but will give this a go and see if it comes out any different, just noticed there's no fat in your recipe, doesn't it need any? - just most have butter or oil to keep bread moist, wondered if it made a difference
    • JackieO
    • By JackieO 13th Apr 08, 11:15 AM
    • 16,929 Posts
    • 144,929 Thanks
    JackieO
    You all mke me feel awful I bought a breadmaker about two years ago and it's still sitting in it's box. To this day I havn't a clue as to what made me buy it and as I live alone I really can't see me using it .I think I may offer it on freecycle as it's just wasting away up on top of my cupboard .
    Quot Libros,Quam Breve Tempus.
  • looby-loo
    I've just made Chelsea buns using my Kenwood Chef. I did it whilst cooking Sunday lunch and it seemed to take no time. They were so good my daughter has taken them back to uni! Oh well, good for the diet! I love making sweet yeast recipies

    9 buns cost lees than 50p as the oven was on anyway.

    I bought a bread maker because I just can't do plain bread but after the first month I never used it for baking as my results were still useless. I'm off to try the OP's recipe now. Wish me luck!
    • HariboJunkie
    • By HariboJunkie 13th Apr 08, 3:38 PM
    • 7,160 Posts
    • 45,822 Thanks
    HariboJunkie
    I've just made Chelsea buns using my Kenwood Chef. I did it whilst cooking Sunday lunch and it seemed to take no time. They were so good my daughter has taken them back to uni! Oh well, good for the diet! I love making sweet yeast recipies

    9 buns cost lees than 50p as the oven was on anyway.

    I bought a bread maker because I just can't do plain bread but after the first month I never used it for baking as my results were still useless. I'm off to try the OP's recipe now. Wish me luck!
    Originally posted by looby-loo

    Can I have a recipe for the buns please? I've been meaning to try them for ages.
    • oldMcDonald
    • By oldMcDonald 13th Apr 08, 3:59 PM
    • 1,897 Posts
    • 6,875 Thanks
    oldMcDonald
    Can I have a recipe for the buns please? I've been meaning to try them for ages.
    Originally posted by HariboJunkie
    Ditto Haribos post

    I am a recent convert to 'hand made' bread. I used to have a Panasonic BM, which I loved, but when it died I replaced it with a MR Fastbake one which we don't like so much. I find the bread 'cakey'.

    Recently I was given a Kenwood Chef and now use that to make my bread. I get 4 loaves plus a batch of rolls made and rising in 25 mins. The only hard work is weighing the ingredients!!

    I would never go back to using the BM now and will be freecycling it on to someone else very soon.




  • looby-loo
    Can I have a recipe for the buns please? I've been meaning to try them for ages.
    Originally posted by HariboJunkie
    Ditto Haribos post

    I am a recent convert to 'hand made' bread. I used to have a Panasonic BM, which I loved, but when it died I replaced it with a MR Fastbake one which we don't like so much. I find the bread 'cakey'.

    Recently I was given a Kenwood Chef and now use that to make my bread. I get 4 loaves plus a batch of rolls made and rising in 25 mins. The only hard work is weighing the ingredients!!

    I would never go back to using the BM now and will be freecycling it on to someone else very soon.
    by Old McDonald
    Just finished! I've made somemore Chelsea buns as DS2 complained at my having given the first lot to DD1. Then I made bread using the OPs recipe and both are in the oven as I type. (I did other stuff as well - I'm not that slow)

    The sweet dough recipe is here. (It is the one I was taught at school by my cookery teacher who retired when I left in early 70's and she said it was her mums so it must be very old but I've never found an easier or more reliable one)

    Dough
    8oz strong white flour
    1 oz butter or marg
    1/2 oz sugar
    1/2 oz fresh yeast (sorry I don't know what that is for dried)
    1/8 pint milk (2 1/2 fluid oz)
    I egg

    Filling
    1oz butter
    1oz brown suger
    sprinkle of cinnamon
    2oz dried fruit

    Glaze
    1oz sugar
    2 tbl spoon water

    If using dried yeast use it as the normal instructions - my method is for fresh yeast as that is what I have

    Mix the yeast with the just warm milk.
    Rub the butter into the flour, stir in the sugar, stir in the milk/yeast mixture and the egg. Mix to a dough till elastic texture. It should be moist but should come away from the sides of the bowl when pulled up.
    Cover with a plastic bag which does not touch it and leave to double in size

    Knock back and knead for seveal minutes until smooth and velvety. It should not now be sticky. Knead on the table for a few more minutes then roll our to a 9" square. (If it is sticky use a little flour, but careful, use as little as possible)
    Spread with the butter, sprinkle on the brown sugar, cinnamon and dried fruit
    Roll up like a swiss roll.
    Cut into 9 x 1" pieces with a very sharp knife. Turn the pieces on to their ends
    Arrange in a well greased and floured 8" or 9" sandwich tin. Put on in the middle and the other round the outside
    Leave to double in size, or so they all ouch each other
    Back for about 15 mins in a hot oven (7 gas, 190 C)

    Glaze
    Just before they come out of the oven, heat the water and the sugar in a small pan until half the water is gone. Just at this point it starts to go thick. (Careful or you will make caramel and a burnt pan!) Get the buns out of the oven, out of the tin and 'paint' the sugar mixture on the surface. It will just be sticky.
    Cool

    The mixture can be used for fruit buns, hot cross buns, Easter tea ring, etc

    Off to do my glaze now
    Last edited by looby-loo; 13-04-2008 at 7:38 PM.
  • count rostov
    How do you do it with the easy blend yeast?
    Is it just mix all dry ingredients and add about 1 1/4 pint water all at once - then continue as recipe?

    I normally use a bread maker but will give this a go and see if it comes out any different, just noticed there's no fat in your recipe, doesn't it need any? - just most have butter or oil to keep bread moist, wondered if it made a difference
    Originally posted by kate83
    Yes, put all the dry ingredients in a bowl then add the (warm) water a bit at a time, stirring as you go. You may need less or more water. I don't put any fat in the bread - the oil in the nuts/seeds keep it moist and also I use more water than most recipes I think.
    Happy breadmaking!
  • ubamother
    serious kneading is not necessari - google dan lepard's (bread guru!) guardian guide to baking and see the techniques section. I gave up on mi breadmaker a long time ago, and use the sponge technique - the bread is awesome, quick (not the whole process, but the bits u do urself!). His trick for soft bread is to use milk, but boil it first as there is something in the milk that inhibits rising, or softness, can't remember exactli - but it realli works. For posh soft bread I use his delicate milk loaf recipe.

  • looby-loo
    I tried the OPs recipe and it made a lovely loaf. So easy and absolutely no mess, in fact, I didn't touch it at all until I tapped it on the bottom to see if it was cooked!
    Thank you
    • oldMcDonald
    • By oldMcDonald 14th Apr 08, 8:45 PM
    • 1,897 Posts
    • 6,875 Thanks
    oldMcDonald
    <snip>

    The sweet dough recipe is here. (It is the one I was taught at school by my cookery teacher who retired when I left in early 70's and she said it was her mums so it must be very old but I've never found an easier or more reliable one)

    <snip>
    Originally posted by looby-loo
    I made these this afternoon and the kids went mad over them!!

    Thanks for shareing this, it has now been copied into my recipe book to make again




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