Category Archives: Keeping in Touch

Just keeping in touch (1)

Toast bread pretending to be sourdough

Warm milk, bread flour, a little cornflour, a little wholemeal, salt and yeast together yield a soft and tender loaf that toasts beautifully, makes great rolls and has a lovely colour. It’s not sourdough and I’m wondering if you add cornflour to a sourdough loaf whether you will get the same soft crumb… I’ve added the ingredients list at the bottom of the page.

Not had one of these in the garden before!

This little being is a white wagtail – we usually get pied wagtails in our towns, but not these. We get a grey wagtail sometimes, they of course are yellow bellied.  This morning saw one of the jays from the woods come into the garden as well as the usual gang of finches, tits and starlings. The wood pigeons are getting fat, they will become sparrowhawk food if they carry on eating all the food we put out.

Better late than never!

Christmas cake, christmas cake, mix and put in tin. This is Mr Lepard’s caramel cake and I baked it today.  I really enjoyed the bit where the cream hits the caramel and turns to liquid fudge. I quite wanted to stop there and just eat the whole lot with a spoon, but I didn’t…

Glad I used a deep tin and made a cuff for this one

This is an 18 cm diameter tin and the recipe came to the top exactly!  The cake survived baking and I will think of something to put on the top tomorrow. I’ll tell you what it’s like when we cut it.

PS: Someone asked me how to make this bread. It’s pretty basic but here we go….

Zeb’s golden toast bread:

  • 520 grams of full fat milk warmed to at least room temperature (aiming for a dough temperature of about 76 F)
  • 700 g strong white (bread) flour
  • 50 g of cornflour
  • 50 g plain wholemeal flour (not the strong sort, but the sort you use for pastry)
  • 16 g sea salt
  • 15 g fresh yeast or 1 sachet of active instant yeast
  • 1 tbsp barleymalt (optional – gives a nice colour to the crumb and some easy food for the yeast)

Mix dough in your preferred manner. I used a Kenwood this time. Milk in first, followed by yeast, barleymalt, salt and flours. You should have a medium firm dough that is easy to knead. Mix for about 3 minutes on lowest speed. Hand knead briefly and into lightly oiled bowl to prove for ninety minutes. Divide the dough into two, shape 650 g boules, final prove in 750 g size round bannetons, until doubled,  dusted with flour. Bake at 220 C for 30 minutes, reduce temperature to 200 C for 10 minutes more. Cool on rack. This dough will also give you a nice baker’s dozen of 100 g rolls.