Home-baked Bread

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A perfect everyday recipe for a simple white loaf, or ‘cob’. This loaf has a beautifully crisp crust with light, fluffy crumb on the inside.
Makes one loaf

400g strong bread flour
8g salt
8g fast action yeast
30g unsalted butter, softened
300ml water
olive oil

– Add the bread flour, salt, fast action yeast and unsalted butter to an electric mixer. Mix well.

– Add the water slowly and mix until you form a soft dough.

– Knead the dough for 7-8 minutes until smooth.

– Add a drop of olive oil to a clean bowl, place the bread in the bowl, cover and prove 1-2 hours.

– Once the dough has doubled in size, place it out on to a floured surface. Knead it gently to get rid of the air bubbles, folding the dough from the edges back into the centre to make the nice smooth cob shape.

– Once you have formed the dough into a nice smooth ball, place it on a baking tray lined with baking paper, cover, and leave to prove for 1 hour.

– Preheat the oven to 200°C / 180°C with a fan. If you have a steam function, set it to medium. If your oven doesn’t have a steamer function, add a tray of water on the rack beneath the bread.

– You can either make a few slits across the top of the loaf, or leave the dough with a round smooth finish. Sprinkle with flour, place in the oven, and bake for 30 minutes or until the loaf has turned an even golden colour and the loaf sounds hollow when you tap it on the base.

– Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a cooling rack.

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