Wholemeal Bread I

This delicious, simple Wholemeal Bread I is full of goodness – and it tastes marvellous as well. Serve it with cheese and wine as the perfect snack, or with salads. The loaf may be served cold, or slightly warm from the oven.

2-

1 teaspoon butter | oz. fresh yeast

2 tablespoons plus

1 teaspoon soft brown sugar

16 fl. oz. plus

3 tablespoons lukewarm water

2 lb. wholemeal flour

1 teaspoon salt

A nourishingjivliolesotne brown bread, Wholemeal Bread I is good served with butter and cheese.

1 tablespoon dark treacle or molasses

Using the teaspoon of butter, lightly grease a 2-pound loaf tin and set aside.

Crumble the yeast into a small bowl and mash in the 1 teaspoon of sugar with a kitchen fork. Add the 3 tablespoons of lukewarm water and cream the water and yeast together. Set the bowl aside in a warm, draught-free place for 15 to 20 minutes or until the yeast mixture is puffed up and frothy.

Place the flour and salt in a large, warmed mixing bowl and stir in the remaining sugar. Make a well in the centre and pour in the yeast mixture, the remaining lukewarm water and the treacle or molasses. Using your fingers or a spatula, gradually draw the flour mixture into the liquid. Continue mixing until all the flour is incorporated and the dough conies away from the sides of the bowl.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured board or marble slab and knead it for about 8 minutes, reflouring the surface if the dough becomes sticky. The dough should be elastic and smooth.

Rinse, thoroughly dry and lightly grease the large mixing bowl. Shape the dough into a ball and return it to the bowl.

Cover the bowl with a clean damp cloth and set it in a warm, draught-free place. Leave it for 1 to I5 hours or until the dough has risen and almost doubled in bulk.

Turn the risen dough out of the bowl on to a floured surface and knead it for 5 to 8 minutes. Shape the dough into a loaf and place it in the prepared tin. Place the tin in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until the dough has almost doubled in bulk.

Preheat the oven to very hot 450 °F (Gas Mark 8, 230CC). Place the tin in the centre of the oven and bake for 15 minutes.

Then lower the oven temp-erature to fairly hot 400’F (Gas Mark 6, 200 C), put the bread on a lower shelf in the oven and bake for a further 30 to 35 minutes.

After removing the bread from the oven, tip the loaf out of the tin and rap the underside with your knuckles. If the bread sounds hollow, like a drum, it is cooked. If the bread does not sound hollow, lower the oven temperature to moderate 350

°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C), return the loaf, upside-down, to the oven and bake for a further 10 minutes.

Cool the loaf on a wire rack.

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