Ready Steady Bake: Bread
Is there any smell better than freshly baked bread? It’s a beautiful aroma that fills the whole house as soon as you open that oven door. You could always finish off the experience by spreading real butter on the warm crusty bread, and wait just long enough to watch it melt…
Whilst you can’t exactly call bread healthy, there are certainly healthier options available, such as wholemeal bread. The benefit of choosing this over white is that the wholemeal flour contains more fibre. Wholemeal bread also contains more vitamins and minerals than many white breads – meaning that whilst it’s not entirely guilt free, it’s a substantially better choice.
Did you know that September is Organic Month? This is a campaign designed to encourage more people to try organic cooking and to educate them about organic food and farming practices.
The benefits of homemade organic bread include:
- Using organic ingredients benefits nature and the environment.
- You’ll know exactly what’s in your bread and you can add other healthy ingredients.
- Kneading the bread dough gives your arms a good workout!
- It cuts down on packaging – which, in turn, is also good for the environment.
- By buying ingredients in bulk it can save you money overall – if you can resist eating it all at once, of course.
- It’s fun! It can be a great activity to share with children or grandchildren. Making enjoyable memories whilst also creating something tasty to eat together later.
- And finally, let’s be honest – it tastes so much better than shop bought bread.
With this in mind, we wanted to share a recipe which is both a healthier option and also uses organic products.
Organic Wholemeal Seeded Loaf*
This recipe makes 1 loaf, or you can triple the ingredients to make enough bread to freeze and save for later.
- 500g organic strong wholemeal bread flour
- 1tsp quick yeast
- 1tsp sugar
- 1tsp salt
- 350mltepid water
- 1tbsp organic vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon each of sesame and poppy seeds for sprinkling
- 1 x 1kg loaf tin, buttered and sprinkled with sesame seeds
- Put the flour, yeast, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl and blend them together.
- Stir in the water. When everything looks rugged and lumpy, stir in the oil. Using your hands gather everything together into a dough ball.
- Knead dough for 100 presses, or about 5 minutes.
- Cover the dough bowl with oiled cling film (you don’t want it to stick) and leave it in a warm place for about an hour. You can tell it’s ready when the dough ball is about double the size.
- Knead the dough for another 100 presses/5 minutes.
- Shape the dough so that it fits into your prepared tin. Wet your fingers then gently ease the dough into the corners so it fills the tin evenly. Sprinkle the top with the sesame and poppy seeds.
- Loosely cover the tin with the oiled cling film and leave it to rise in a warm place for about 40 minutes.
- Pre-heat the oven to 220˚C/Fan 200˚C/Gas 7 and bake the loaf for 40 – 45 minutes. You will know it’s done when the bottom sounds hollow if you tap it.
- Leave to cool on a wire rack and enjoy!
*Please note, the image used here is from stock photography. For a link to the recipe we adapted, which includes their picture, please click here.