Happy St Patrick’s Day!

It’s St Patrick’s Day! I’m sure you are already aware of this anyway and I hope you all get to something that is a little bit Irish. So far I haven’t baked or cooked anything Irish today nor am I wearing green. Oops, please forgive me, but it is a cold, wild, wild day in Northern Ireland and we had intended on going out to get hot chocolate, but it’s even too cold to do that.

The youngest children went to comic art class and I just stayed home and baked bread. I made a really soft tasty sandwich loaf and baked it in my 13 inch Pullman tin. It has been a while since I baked regular sandwich bread so I thought I should keep my hand in. We’ve been loving the artisan breads I have made lately and enjoyed the new sourdough bread, but sometimes it’s good to just eat regular white bread.

Unusually, I am going to give you this recipe in two forms, once as a normal bake and the other time using sourdough starter. I have baked this bread both ways and both work very well. As you can see this is my own recipe and I assure you that you will not be disappointed. The method of mixing, kneading and baking is exactly the same but the two recipes are slightly different.

Soft sandwich Bread

Makes a 13inch Pullman loaf

750g strong white flour (bread flour or even plain flour would do)

1.5 sachets of dried yeast

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon salt

3 tablespoons dried milk powder

2 tablespoons butter

450ml warm water

Alt Recipe – Soft sandwich Loaf with Sourdough Starter

Makes a 13 inch Pullman loaf

700g strong white flour (or plain flour)

150g sourdough starter

1 sachet yeast

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon salt

2 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons dried milk powder

400ml warm water

Method

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl (including sourdough starter). Rub in the butter or use your dough hook to mix that in too.

Introduce about 2/3 of the water to the dry mix and slowly incorporate the mix with the dough hooks. As it’s coming together add the rest of the warm water and continue to mix with your dough hooks until it looks smooth.if you need slightly. Ore water that’s okay, depending on how wet or thick your sourdough starter is you may need a splash more water.

Tip the dough onto a floured board and knead until smooth and elastic.

Leave the dough to rest in an covered oiled bowl for around an hour.

Oil your Pullman tin.

After the hour knock out the air and shape the dough to fit into the Pullman tin.

The next stage might take longer than an hour but leave the dough to rise inside the Pullman. When it’s an inch or two shy of the top of the Pullman tin you need to warm your oven.

Preheat the oven to around 190C.

Put the lid in on your Pullman tin and bake for around 20 minutes with the lid on. Slide the lid off the tin and bake for approximately another 15 minutes. Your bread will sound hollow when it’s tapped if it is done.

Cool on a rack completely before slicing.

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