Archive of ‘Breads and scones’ category

Pear bread

close up of a slice of pear bread

This pear bread begs to be underestimated. But I kid you not, I prefer this to any banana bread I have had recently. The butter, almond meal and cinnamon make this one of the tastiest breads I’ve had in ages. (more…)

Super healthy banana and fruit bread

Banana and stone fruit bread image taken from above

Banana bread is maths. Well, trying to make healthy banana bread with no butter or oil, that also isn’t rubbery, is maths. The high butter quantity in banana bread has always annoyed me as it feels like it should be a healthy snack. Banana + Bread = healthy, right? Yea, well, Starbucks banana bread is worth about one and a half snickers bars. I know which I’d prefer… (more…)

Olive and parmesan bread rolls

Homemade bread rolls, crunchy and steaming, full of flavoursome olives and parmesan – need I say more?

The same hot baker who taught me to make scones taught me to make bread. His attitude was great: bread is not tricky, and this whole thing of knead your dough for 15 minutes, stir it clockwise four times then blow on it until it rises is just not needed. Pffft.

Here’s how to make bread. Simple and good. I’m going to do a few bread posts soon, including sour dough. The first four steps for bread making are labelled below as most recipes use the same methodology, and future-Aimee will be referring back to this post.

Step one: Combine the flour, yeast, salt, parmesan, olives, garlic and optional sage/basil in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Make a well in the centre and add the water.

Step two: Use a wooden spoon to combine ingredients and then your hands to bring the mixture together to a soft dough. Give it a good pounding until well combined.

It helps to think of something that makes you angry, like my new neighbour the DJ who won’t turn his music down no matter how nice I ask. *thump* *thump* *thump*

Step three: Make the dough into a ball and leave it in the bowl, spray with olive oil, or drizzle it with olive oil to ensure it doesn’t dry out and stick to the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and stand in a warm, draught-free place for 45-50 minutes, or until the dough has risen and doubled in size. Watch the magic begin…

You can see the dough below is about double the one I’m pounding above.

Step four:  Lightly grease a baking tray with spray olive oil and sprinkle with flour. Turn dough out onto your lightly floured bench and use your fist to punch the dough down again.

If you were making a loaf you’d stop at this point and make it into a round loaf, oval loaf or put into a lightly floured and greased bread tin. But for the rest of us, let’s get ready to roll (as in bread roll, do you get it? ah, forget it, my talents are wasted).

Use your fingers to make it into a rectangle about 1.5cm thick. Fold into a roll, making sure the seam is at the bottom, and cut into eight portions, or just roughly make eight portions from your original rectangle.

Place onto the greased tray.

Brush each portion lightly with water, press optional sunflower seeds on top and leave in a warm, draught- free place for 45 minutes, or until the dough portions double in size.

preheat oven to 220°C.

See how they grow? The ones below are still not cooked, this is just them doubling.


Bake the rolls in preheated oven for 18 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through, and the base sounds hollow when tapped.

Get it while it’s hot!

Lovely with pumpkin soup. Nom Nom.

Thanks to my lovely friend Pam for her help with this. We drank champagne while I baked, she snapped and we chatted. It was lovely.

Also, while I have your attention, two important things:

Firstly, a big thank you to Just a Smidgen for passing on the Versatile Blogger award on to me. Made my day!

Secondly, Erin from the Spiffy Cookie is having a blogger bake sale at the moment to raise money for her friend Dave. Funds will help buy him a prosthetic leg after a recent motorcycle accident. You can bid on items, then they are mailed to you. It’s for American readers only though, as international shipping of baked goods was a bit of an unknown factor. Please go across and have a look.

Ingredients (makes eight bread rolls)
450 grams (3 cups) plain flour, sifted
1 x 7 gram sachet dried yeast (or 2 ¼ teaspoons)
1 teaspoon Salt
20 grams (1/4 cup) finely shredded Parmesan
40 grams (about eight) black olives, pitted, chopped (feel free to add more if you’re an olive fan)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
300mls lukewarm water
2 teaspoon of olive oil or spray oil
Water, for brushing

Optional:
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage or basil
Pumpkin seeds, to top

Method

  1. Combine the flour, yeast, salt, parmesan, olives, garlic and optional sage/basil in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Make a well in the centre and add the water.
  2. Use a wooden spoon to combine ingredients and then your hands to bring the mixture together to a soft dough. Give it a good pounding until well combined.
  3. Make the dough into a ball and leave it in the bowl and spray with olive oil, or drizzle it with olive oil to ensure it doesn’t dry out and stick to the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and stand in a warm, draught-free place for 45-50 minutes, or until the dough has risen and doubled in size.
  4. Lightly grease a baking tray with spray olive oil and sprinkle with flour. Turn dough out onto your lightly floured bench and use your fist to punch the dough down.
  5. If you were making a loaf you’d stop at this point and make it into a round loaf, oval loaf or put into a lightly floured and greased bread tin.
  6. Use your fingers to make it into a rectangle about 1.5cm thick. Fold into a role, making sure the seam is at the bottom, and cut into eight portions, or just roughly make eight portions from your original rectangle.
  7. Place onto the greased tray.
  8. Brush each portion lightly with water, press optional sunflower seeds on top and leave in a warm, draught- free place for 45 minutes, or until the dough portions double in size.
  9. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 220°C.
  10. Bake the rolls in preheated oven for 18 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through, and the base sounds hollow when tapped.

Healthy? Depends if you’re one of those no-carby people. Whom I do not understand. These are 200 calories a roll.

Storage: They freeze well, otherwise best eaten within a couple of days. Store in airtight container.

Source: Modified from taste.com.


Raspberry scones

Here are some important things to know about scones:

(Points 4 & 5 and the most poignant for me.)

  1.  An original ‘proper’ scone was about the size of a dinner plate, made of oats and baked on a griddle.
  2. Then it was cut into the triangle like shapes you see today, which are called scones. The large round cake was referred to as a bannock.
  3. Another common variety is the dropped scone which just requires you to literally grab a chunk of batter and fry it or cook it on ya griddle. Or, the oven.
  4. I learnt to make scones at a one day bread making course at the old Convent Bakery in Melbourne. The baker was totally hot.
  5. They’re yum.

This recipe was the one given to me at my baking course. The hot baker used what I’d called the drop method. His words were something like ‘scones should be rustic looking, just grab handfuls of dough and chuck it on your tray’.

So I follow his cooking method because he seemed very hot wise.

Dropped on the tray, waiting to be cooked.

Ingredients
400 grams self raising flour (about 3 heaped cups)
30 grams sugar (about 2 ½ tablespoons)
2 pinches of salt
40 grams butter, softened
1 cup milk
Optional: 80-100 grams raspberries, blueberries, sultanas or chocolate chips
Optional: dash of cinnamon

(I used 100 grams of raspberries and a dash of cinnamon)

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 240 C. Line a tray with baking paper.
  2. Place flour, sugar and salt in a bowl
  3. Fold through the butter to make the mixture like bread crumbs, then add milk
  4. Don’t over mix, gently bring all ingredients together, add your optional flavouring
  5. Place handfuls of dough on trays (as pictured above)
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden on top. Makes about 12.

Best served hot, with lots of butter, jam and cream!

Healthy? Plain scone with no flavour is about 155. With raspberries they’re 160, with sultanas about 185.

Storage: They freeze well, otherwise best eaten within a couple of days. Store in airtight container.

References:
1.    Wikipedia
2.    The hot baker at  Convent Bakery

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