I was lucky enough to go on a Waring's Bakery Masterclass in December, and it gave me a renewed love of hand baking* bread. Consequently, we've enjoyed plenty of yeasted bakes over the Christmas period which maybe hasn't been so good for our waistlines. We do have a very full freezer though!
*When I say hand baking, I learned a fantastic hand baking method from the course, which was great in a kitchen where I didn't have to do the washing up or have someone hovering around trying to make a cup of tea/sandwich/get in the way. At home, I have a Kenwood Mixer with a dough hook, and I'm trying to apply some of the principles I learned on the course to using the dough hook.
One of the tips I picked up was that if the dough looks too wet when you first knead it, it could be that you haven't kneaded the dough enough. It's amazing how kneading it for a little longer means that the dough comes together better and changes in texture.
25g fresh yeast, stirred into 160ml water
2 tbsp malt extract
600g Granary Flour
100g Wholemeal Flour
1.5 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
25g butter, diced
Stir the fresh yeast into 160ml of lukewarm water and set to one side for a few minutes.
Add the flours to the mixing bowl along with the sugar, salt, malt extract and butter.
Add the yeast and water mixture and start the machine kneading on a low speed (using the dough hook).
Gradually add most of the rest of the water. Increase the speed of the machine and knead for about 5 minutes, or until the dough starts to come together and away from the sides of the bowl.
Leave the dough to prove for about an hour until doubled in size (I reckon mine increased in size by more than that!)
Shape the dough into equal pieces. Make each roll smooth, keeping any seams or joins on the underside of the roll.
I made a baker's dozen (13), and the rolls were a fairly decent size. The smaller the roll, the quicker it will take to cook.
Leave to prove again for about half an hour. Space them out on a baking sheet allowing them room to rise without touching each other. I leave mine to prove on the hob whilst the oven is heating.
Place in a preheated hot oven for 20 min (mine is a fan oven and I heated it to 200 degrees C). Turn the trays of rolls around after 10min to ensure they cook evenly.
When they are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped, they are cooked!
Cool on a wire rack under a damp teatowel for about ten minutes so that they're not too crispy.