Last Christmas I was looking for crackers, more interesting than the usual key ring and minipuzzle ones and came across the Tiny Marmalade website where Paloma makes, as the name says, tiny pots of delicious and unusual marmalade and puts them in crackers. you can buy them separately tooThey did make for semi-dangerous crackers to pull but tasted lovely and Paloma puts interesting recipes on her blog. This week’s was about bread so I decided to add it here, especially as what she says about bread resonates with our group. I’ll send the our link to her too and have posted hers at the top here.
We’re back from Honduras (and had an amazing time) and wonder how the bread went in the week before Easter? We probably wont put any Honduran recipes up on this for now but wait for Leo to do that on his return!
See you all soon,
From the Tiny Marmalade blog- see link above for recipe
‘If I was told that I must pick one single food to live on for the rest of my days it would be, without a doubt, bread. I could live on bread alone. Well, I could certainly do with a little bit of stilton and red wine as well. But if it has to be just one thing, then it will be bread.
Bread is beautiful. I love it from crust to crumb. It is amazing the humongous range of colours, flavours and textures you can get by just mixing water and flour. I’m fascinated about the magical process that turns these two humble ingredients into heavenly food.
Baking homemade bread is one of the most relaxing and satisfying things for me in the kitchen. I love the smell of the yeasted dough, how it feels in my hands while I knead it, seeing it raise, watching it puff in the oven, and then slicing through a crust, then through a wonderful crumb, and taking that first warm bite. I love everything about the process, and could easily bake and eat and bake and eat bread over and over again.
I also love sharing what I bake. I love treating my friends with a freshly baked loaf and bringing bread to family dinners. People don’t often get fresh baked bread these days and it is really a treat when you show up with a fresh baked loaf of bread.
There is even a research (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2226067/How-aroma-freshly-baked-bread-makes-kinder-strangers.html) that suggest that smelling freshly baked bread makes us more generous and kinder.
Whole grain breads are my favourite. They are easy, light and good for your body and soul. Fresh baked breads should be a must in every household.
This recipes was a sort of experiment that has turned into an amazing bread that is just so amazingly tasty and nice that you would eat it just by itself. Well, or why not with a bit of cheese and red wine’.
Bread Text 10-03-2016 Today’s bread is seeded white made using Walk Mil stone ground white flour with sesame, pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Other ingredients: Sourdough starter, salt yest and Oxton Spring Water. Michael mixed the starter, lesley and Helen mixed the dough and Linda, Ellie and Angela shaped and baked. The dough was lovely, moist, and easily workable. Enjoy! Greetings from your bakery team
PS: No bread on the 24th of March, back in action on the 31st of March.
p.p.s There were a few loaves left again today, not picked up and we went out so didnt have time to ring people. We did manage to give them away though.
I’m not sure what will happen next week as we’re away but hope the shopkeeper gets to keep them or give away as they want if there are any left. I thought bread was delicious again, as usual! but it is best eaten on the night. So hope everyone remembers on time next week – 4.15-6. Julia
Sometimes we do not know what to do with all the left-over bread. If you use bread crumbs in your kitchen this is a good way of using stale bread. But there are limits to the amounts of bread crumbs we can use in our klitchen. There is also a limit to the amount of bread and butter pudding that one can consume. So why not use one of those (for the UK more exotic) dumplings as they are commonly served in Austria or the adjoining areas? Ihave recently made this following recipe on a number of occasions and it was well liked by people. Why not give it a try? They are often served as part of a posh meal and very good for mopping up some delicious gravy.
Napkin dumpling (Servietten-Knödel)
250g stale bread cubes. Any of our bread will do but the plain varieties (wheat, spelt) will work better. The others make interesting taste variants.
150-250 ml warm milk
2 eggs ( whole)
60 g butter ( melted)
1 small onion ( chopped)
Parsley (chopped 1-3 tbsp)
salt (and pepper if desired)
1 tablespoon sour cream (optional)
1/3 tsp nutmeg ideally freshly ground.
1. Chop stale bread in smallish cubes.
2. Melt butter in a pan and add chopped onion. Let fry until translucent. Take off the heat and add parsley.
3. Mix eggs, sour cream, salt and nutmeg. Add to bread cubes. Best mixing with one of your bare hands, kind of squeezing it through the fingers. Add milk with the other hand but do not add all the milk at once. If it feels like it is going to be soft enough add less milk.
4. Add butter, onion and parsley mixture.
5. Adjust salt to taste.
6. Add nutmeg (best freshly ground) and if desired pepper. Mix again.
7. Let Knödel-dough rest for about 30 minutes in a cool place. Then mix again and make sure you cannot squeeze any liquid out separate from the rest of the dough. If you can: either queeze dry and discard surplus liquid or add more bread and let rest or add flour. I have never had to do any of that.
8. Then form a Ø 2-3 inch roll and wrap in clean tea towel. (Some people prefer heat resistant cellophane additionally wrapped in aluminium foil). Tie ends with string. The end result looks like a big sausage.
9. Put in a big enough pot with simmering water – I use an oval shape pot for this.
10. Let simmer for about 20-25 minutes.
11. Unwrap and cut in half-inch thick slices.
12. If you wanted to make straight dumplings add 50g or so of flour to the dough, form goose-egg sized dumplings and simmer in boiling water for about 20 minutes.
If you want to make the dumpling in advance reheat by re-simmering or in the microwave, but they are best used fresh.
What to do with left over dumplings? As a student a cheap dish in a restaurant was ‘Geröstete Knödel mit Ei’ – dumplings slized and fried with chopped onions in a pan with some butter, and with some scrambled egg poured over and cooked with it, or as part of a meal, eg with some vegetables and/or sausages cooked separately. Sprinkle with some chopped chives or parsley.
Bread text 03-03-16 today’s is the plain white loaf made with 100% Walk Mill flour, sourdough starter, a hint of bread spice, and salt and yeast. And of course plenty of the famous Oxton spring water. Starter was mixed by Michael, the dough by Ian and Michael and bakers and shapers were Claire, Ellie, and Pete. We will not have bread in the Easter week (24th of March) so the last bread before Easter will be on the 17th of March, and the first bread after Easter will on the 31st of March. We have been given a phone and may experiment with sending out texts to people as bread reminders as we are still occasionally left with some uncollected loaves. Let us know what the experience was like when it happens. Michael will be away for much of March so it is important that the bread collection is prompt and within the pick-up period of 16.15-18.00, please. Lesley will be the point of communication but she is also very busy and away part of the time. Enjoy your loaf. Greetings from the bakery team!
Also – it is Real Bread Week – from May 14-22. Does the Bread Circle want to do anything for it? See link – http://www.sustainweb.org/realbread/events/
Back in Germany where I come from we have a few customs for the Sunday before Easter that are now dying out: The person to get up last in a family is the ‘Palm Donkey’ for the day. This is to be avoided at all cost if you do not want to be shamed although in my current family some people would be proud of getting up last….
And then there is the custom of the palm pretzl for breakfast, a largish sweet creation that can taste delicious when fresh. It is reatively easy: Mix all the following ingredients together in a mixer:
140g sugar (castor preferred)
30g lard/suet or use coconut oil
60g fresh yeast from the bakery at your supermarket or 2x 25g sachet of dried fast action yeast
2 eggs (mixed with a fork, keep some bit back for brushing the tops at the end)
400-450ml lukewarm milk
zest and juice of one lemon (unwaxed) – can be replaced if desired by a good dose of vanilla sugar/essence.
When mixed and kneaded to a fairly manageable consistency let rest for 45 minutes; then divide into 6 equal parts of approximately 300g each. Roll these bits out into thin strands of roughly equal length. Start braiding three strands at a time from the middle until roughly half the length of the strands is used up. Roll the remaining strands toegther into a single strand thinner and longer again. Then form a pretzl by crossing the strands over each other as if to make a knot and bringing them back and pressing them and uniting them with the main body of the Pretzl which should now look nicely proportioned and attractive. Pictures and German explanations can be seen here:
When you are happy with your two pretzls, brush them with a bit of egg and sprinkle small sugar crystals or very coarse sugar over them. Let prove for about 20 minutes or less in a warm place, and then bake for about 20-25 minutes at 180 C in a preheated oven.
Should be popular.