Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Home-made Bread

Making bread may seem to be a difficult task even for an experienced cook.
Having your kitchen filled with the heady aroma of fresh bread in the oven is worth the try. Cut the first slice and take a bite from your own bread is rewarding and what is all about!

The Ingredients

5 cups plain flour or wholemeal 
2-2 ½ cups warm water
1 ½ teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon caster sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 table spoon sesame or black cummin seeds

1. Dissolve yeast and sugar in ½ cup lukewarm water. Stir well. Cover with plastic wrap and let in a warm place to rise.

2. Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl and make a pit in the center.

3. Pour in the yeast, oil and water,(water, must be warm, not hot). Knead well until the mixture is well combined and forms a rough dough ball.
4Put the dough on a floured surface and knead well for 10 more  minutes.
TIP : During kneading, wet your hands often in warm water and dust the dough and kneading surface with flour.

5. When dough is smooth, well mixed and elastic you're almost done. Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and let it rize in a warm place for about 30 to 40 minutes.

6. Remove the dough from the bowl and put on a floured surface. Knead for 1 more minute and you're done.
7. Divide the dough into two even-sized pieces and shape each piece into a 25 cm – long loaves. Place loaves in oven tray, 5 cm apart. Cover and set aside until well risen again.
8. Preheat oven to 200º C. 
9. Brush water on the loaves and sprinkle with sesame or black cummin seeds, if you so wish. 

9. Bake for 15 minutes at 200º C and continue on at 180º C for 30 more minutes.
TIP: Tap the base and if sounds like hollow, is done.
10Remove from oven and let it cool on a wire rack.

Note: Best eaten on the day of baking. Reheats well.

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