The bread making blog

No-knead to worry

No-knead to worry

Although the kneading of dough is one of the most familiar and distinctive images people associate with making bread, it doesn’t have to be part of the process at all. So-called ‘no-knead’ recipes dispense entirely with this input of labour,…

Auxiliary flour

Auxiliary flour

We all know and love flour as the essential ingredient in bread. But flour can also perform other functions, acting, as it were, as an assistant or auxiliary in the process of making bread. Most of the time, the support…

A tale of two loaves

A tale of two loaves

A colleague at work was telling me the other day about a lentil loaf she had made for a dinner party. We normally talk about really exciting stuff like skydiving and underwater cave exploration, but the other day it was…

Opposites attract

Opposites attract

Still on the subject of brownies, some recent experiments have finally borne fruit. For no particular reason that I know of, it occurred to me that salted chocolate brownies might be a good idea. By now we’re all familiar with…

Brownie promise

Brownie promise

Years ago when I lived in London I used to frequent a small newsagent-cum-delicatessen run by a Turkish family. From under a glass counter at the front of the shop they sold freshly-made pastries and, as it was directly opposite…

The heat is on

The heat is on

You can reasonably expect most recipes to include directions on both the temperature that your oven should be at and the length of time it should take for the goods to be optimally baked. It wasn’t always so. The gas…

Voulez-vous façonner ma pâte?

Voulez-vous façonner ma pâte?

Working with soft, sticky bread doughs – those containing 70% or more water by weight of flour – can be tricky. When it comes to shaping the loaf, you need to flour your hands and worksurface to help prevent the…

Learning maltese

Learning maltese

Last night I went to see musician and composer Richard Skelton perform with the Elysian Quartet at Snape Maltings, the concert hall founded by composer Benjamin Britten in 1967. Skelton’s music, which is inspired by the landscape, flora and fauna…

Reckless Eccles

Reckless Eccles

Named after the town of Eccles, a few miles west of Manchester, Eccles cakes are thought to date back to the late 18th century when a gentleman by the name of James Birch began selling them to an enthusiastic public….

A Special Baking loaf

A Special Baking loaf

In my last post I talked about Sekowa ‘Special Baking Ferment’ and how to prepare a starter with it. Once the starter is established it can be stored in the fridge until required, and doesn’t need to be revived as…