“All life moving to one measure – Daily bread.”
Few notes of the bread-making art: There are several kinds of yeast. Compressed yeast, which is quicker-acting than the dried yeast, must be kept in a cool place or it will spoil. The liquids used in bread-making are water, milk, or sometimes, potato water. Sweetening is usually added to bread. This can be either sugar, honey, or sometimes molasses. For good flavor and texture use butter for bread dough. Temperature for rising and oven temperature is exceedingly important. It is truly a laboratory process to make bread correctly. The finished product should be an even-sized, medium-brown loaf with a good crust and fine grain, not lumpy.
Here is a recipe for a good breakfast bread. Also excellent for ham, corned beef, or beef sandwiches.
- 1 cup bread flour
- 3/4 cup rustic wheat flour
- 1 cup lukewarm sparkling water, (I use San Pellegrino)
- 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Oats, lightly toasted (plus extra for a top)
- 1 package (2 1/4 tsp) dry yeast
- 1/4 cup molasses or dark honey
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp. melted, cooled butter
In a small bowl, combine half of the water, molasses and sprinkle with the yeast. Let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes, then stir to combine.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix together the flours, oats, and salt. Slowly add the yeast mixture and remaining water. Increase the speed to medium-low and knead for 3-4 minutes. Add the butter at the end. The dough should be a little sticky. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about one hour.
Turn the dough onto a generously floured work surface, shape into a loaf, sprinkle with oats, cover with the kitchen towel, and leave to rise again for about 30 min.
Preheat the oven together with the baking tray to 450°F. Spray the oven with the water, put the bread onto a hot tray, and bake for 5 min. Spray the oven with water again, reduce the heat to 400°F and bake for 30-35 minutes more. Switch off the oven, leave the bread for 15 min with the oven door slightly open.
Let cool completely on wire racks, before slicing and serving.