You can do it! You CAN bake your own bread!

Recently I've had a lot of people tell me how amazing it is that I bake my own bread and how they'd love to, if they had the skill/time/energy/insert an excuse of your choice here lol Now I am no expert nor do I have tonnes of spare time or energy but it really isn't as hard as people think and once you've done it a few times its so so easy and quick to make loaves like this.


Here is my recipe, adapted to be hassle free, easy to remember and hard to mess up! If you've ever wanted to start baking your own bread, give it a try, you'll not be disappointed I promise :)





I use 'fast action yeast' because it means you don't have to leave it to rise twice, thats right, just mix, knead, rise and bake!

Put 500g strong white bread flour in a bowl add 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons oil. 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 teaspoons of yeast. Add about half a warm pint of water and mix, add about another half and keep mixing.



If its too wet add flour, too dry add water. Get your hands in and rough it up a bit! Knead for at least 5 minutes after its all mixed in, 10 minutes if you have time or your not confident with your kneading skills... You'll need to keep sprinkling with flour while kneading or it'll be a sticky mess!




Optional extra - 2 small handfuls of seeds or nuts or oats etc



No you don't even need a bread tin! Just oil it up and put it in any good size cake tin or roasting pan then leave to rise in a warm spot covered with a tea towel. When its doubled in size, should look something like this...


Put the oven on at 180 and bake until browned on top, turn once during baking, normally takes about 35 minutes, leave to cool on a wire rack and enjoy!


Please excuse my nearly week-long absence, this week has been so busy for me, exciting too though. We've been working away on organising and de-cluttering one room at a time and our home is starting to show more of our personalities, I like it :) We moved the raised bed I made last year from our old house round to our new place finally! Now we have even more growing space woo hoo! - post on that to come soon. Also I've been baking lots and trying out new dinner recipes so I haven't had time to blog much but I have enjoyed reading your posts over cups of tea when I've had a second! There's always time to read blogs isn't there?!

26 comments:

  1. Astra - Yes, and you CAN bake a loaf of bread in a solar oven too :)

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  2. Really? Thats amazing! I'd be interested to try it in Ireland, maybe in the summer the sun'd be strong enough. Did you buy yours or make it? I'd like to make one to experiment with this year :)

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  3. I've always made my owwn bread...actually right now, I'm waiting for 8 loves to come out of the oven. Four wholewheat flax, four wholewheat flax and caraway. YUM!
    Jane x

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  4. Ooops..eight loaves not loves!
    Jane x

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    1. wow 8 loaves! I've never tried flax before but I know its so good for you so I might give it a go :) x

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  5. Replies
    1. Ah another man-baker, very cool, I taught Al how to bake bread and he's really good, always ends up being chilli brad though lol!

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  6. There is nothing like home made bread - no excuses!

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    1. Too true! Have you done much baking in your new house yet?

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    1. haha good! Btw I can't get to your gardening blog, only the beer one :( did you remove the link from your profile?

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    2. I did. It's back now :)

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  8. Agreed, there is nothing like making your own bread! And it's so beneficial in so many ways! :-)

    (BTW-Yes, there should always be time to read blogs ;-))

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    1. :) and you're recent bread post is really amazing, must try that plat style its gorgeous - anyone reading this seriously go look!

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  9. Loving your blog! Such a nice place to chill:)

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    1. Hey Nicki thanks so much! and thanks for leaving a comment you've made my morning :) x

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  10. I'm tempted to try and bake a loaf of bread myself. Maybe I'll make that a challenge for this weekend. Do you find your bread is dense? I made my own bread a few years back and it was almost cake like in consistency- is that normal?

    Sarah

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    1. Hey Sarah, no thats not really normal unless its gone wrong... try again I'm sure you'll get it! There's a few things that could have gone wrong try these extra tips and I'll cross my fingers for you - that always helps lol!

      Use 'strong bread flour' it helps it hold the air bubbles in place.
      Knead it well - go for 10 mins.
      When its finished rising and your putting it in the oven be SUPER gentle, every bump pops air bubbles inside the loaf causing it to become more dense
      When your closing the oven door dont slam it, that changes the pressure in your oven - not good!

      even with all that the bread you make after the first few loaves are bound to be better so stick at it, its so rewarding :)

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    2. Thanks for replying and all the tips. I'm going to give it another bash over the weekend- you have inspired me :-)

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  11. Great! I MUST do this soon- ingredients in the cupboard so no excuses. It's often the way with trying recipes etc for the first time, you just need to make yourself do it that first time and then you realise how easy it is.

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    1. Oh yeah charlotte and get your wee girl involved, kids love kneading! I baked bread with my preschoolers on monday and they loved it, also the bread was "more than edible... actually good!" one parent said with surprise haha!

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  12. Isn't homemade bread the best?

    I've been making my own bread off and on for years, though I have to admit that these days I most often let the bread machine do the kneading and first rise for me. The end result is that I still enjoy freshly baked bread.

    Great looking loaf. :-)

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    1. It really is the best carole, I used to have a bread maker when i lived at home - so handy. I like the idea of baking it yourself though and just using it as a mixing/kneading bowl!

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  13. Hi Astra, thanks for you tips above, just thought I'd stop by and let you know that I gave bread making another go today the pleasing results are on my blog; http://littlefamilyof3-sarah.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/what-did-you-do-with-your-sunday.html

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    Replies
    1. Awesome sarah! you loaves look amazing im so glad i inspired you :)

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