Thursday, 15 August 2013

To health with wholemeal bread

It's been a strange few days.  My visit to Germany was lovely but also tinged with sadness as my sister's father-in-law had recently been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, aged 70.  The day after my return he passed away, four short weeks after his initial diagnosis.  A difficult time for the immediate family and everyone who knew him.
For me, it has brought into focus (yet again) just how precious our health is and how we should do everything to protect ourselves from illness. 

It's a bit difficult to find a cheerful link to a recipe but I guess today's recipe is all about health, so that's positive.  I have been looking for a good recipe for wholemeal bread and tried a few - by combining the bits I like most from all the different recipes, I have now come up with one that is not only easy but also super-tasty and good for you.  The most surprising ingredient I found in one of the recipes was half a vitamin C tablet - apparently, it lightens wholemeal bread's texture...I tried it and it does seem to work!

This bread doesn't contain any sugar or other sweetener and yet rises fine by just using the natural sugars (starch) in the flour - another plus for our health.

I hope you enjoy this one!

Wholemeal bread (makes one small loaf)

400g wholemeal bread flour
50g white bread flour
2 tsp dried yeast
2.5 tsp salt
half a vitamin C tablet, crushed (half a 500 or 1000 mg tablet)
400ml warm water
1 - 2 tbsp oil (olive oil or other vegetable oil)

  1. Combine all the dry ingredients with the warm water to form a sticky dough.
  2. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and leave to rise in a warm place until roughly double in size.
  3. Deflate the dough (just prod your fingers into it), form into a ball again and leave to rise again.
  4. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees (fan oven).
  5. Place the risen dough into a loaf pan and bake for 15 minutes at 220 degrees, then turn the oven down to 200 degrees, baking the bread for a further 15 - 20 minutes until the crust is golden and the bread sounds hollow when tapped underneath.
  6. Leave to cool, then slice and enjoy with your favourite topping.

This bread freezes well in slices, so you might want to make double the amount whilst you are at it.

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