Baking my own bread allows me to channel my inner housewife and it’s my favourite thing to make. It’s so satisfying, tastes amazing when it’s freshly-baked, and really isn’t that difficult to do!
I started making my own bread as I was advised by various nutritionists to avoid gluten in order to improve my IBS. As shop-bought gluten-free bread is so rubbish, I started trying out recipes for Spelt and Rye breads as these grains are very low in gluten.
The recipe I’m posting today is for an easy white Spelt loaf. The flour I used on this occasion was lighter than usual, and so gave it a less dense texture that is very similar to a normal white loaf. Usually, you’ll find that Spelt (and especially Rye) breads have more flavour and a slightly heavier texture.
Here’s how to make one of these beauties:
500g Spelt flour (this loaf is white, but wholemeal is great too)
1 tsp fast-action dried yeast
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sugar (honey is also really nice in this – substitute the sugar for 1tbsp honey if you wish)
1/2 tsp salt
300ml warm water
- Mix together the flour, yeast, sugar and salt in a large bowl.
- Pour in the water and mix roughly.
- Add the oil and mix to form a sticky dough.
- Knead the dough for several minutes (10, if you can manage it!)
- Roll the dough into a ball, place back in the bowl and cover with a cloth. Then leave this in a warm-ish, draught-free place to rise, until it has doubled in size. This usually take me 1-2 hours. It’s important to make sure the dough has risen enough – if it hasn’t, leave it longer otherwise the bread will be too dense.
- When the dough has risen, flour your surface and knead it again for another 10 minutes or so.
- Shape the dough (I like to do a ball in order to make a cobb loaf, as shown in the photos, but you can pay around with this how you like.) and place this on an oiled baking sheet.
- Cover this again and leave it in a warm place for a further 30 minutes. This should be long enough for your dough to rise to a nice, bake-able size.
- Remember to preheat your oven before the next stage – 220/200 fan.
- Use a large, sharp nice to carve any sort of pattern you want on the bread. I also like to sprinkle some flour on top, to make it look extra professional 😉
- Pop it in the oven for around 35/40 minutes – you’ll be able to tell when it’s done by the browning, and by checking that the bottom is cooked.
Fresh breads usually only last a couple of days before they start to go hard, but don’t forget that you can freeze this and defrost again whenever you want. You can even toast it from frozen in a few minutes.
Decent bread seems to have a reputation for being really difficult to make, but it’s absolutely not! You may just need a few practices to get it exactly how you want, as with any baking. After making my own bread, I rarely eat any shop-bought stuff – it’s just not the same!
Here’s what I did with this baby this weekend:
Don’t forget to show me any photos if you make this yourselves!