A friend at work mentioned that he liked bread made using the minimal knead technique. However with work and children (and cats), it took too long on a work night, and the bread was not ready for their dinner time.
I altered the recipe so that dough is prepped before work and baked fresh in the evening. Or prepped in the evening for fresh bread with breakfast.
Work Day Bread
- Baking tray or pizza stone
- Kitchen scales
- Measuring jug
- Mixing bowl
- Timer (kitchen, phone app)
- 600g strong white bread flour
- 450ml warm water (300ml cold + 150ml boiling)
- ½ sachet dry instant yeast (or 1 tsp from a jar)
- 1 tsp table salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp olive oil
Before Going To Work
- Add the water to a jug.
- Add yeast and sugar to water, stir to dissolve both in the water. Leave for 5 mins.
- Mix flour and salt in bowl.
- Stir water mixture again, then mix with the flour to create a wet dough. Cover bowl.
- Rest the dough in the bowl for 15-20 mins.
- On lightly oiled surface, stretch and fold back the dough for 15 seconds. Return to bowl, cover.
- Repeat previous two steps twice.
- Return to bowl, cover, leave in a cool, cat-safe place. Go to work.
- Greet the family and cats. Check the cats haven’t stolen, or tampered with, the dough.
- Turn the dough onto lightly floured worksurface.
- Gently stretch and fold the dough three times. Avoid compressing and losing the air bubbles.
- Shape into a rounded brick by rolling a little.
- If making two small loaves split the dough in half, shape into two small rounded bricks.
- Place seam side down on floured baking tray (or baking parchment if using a pizza stone). Cover and rest (prove) for an hour.
- Whilst the dough is proving, preheat oven to 200°C (220°C for non-fan, using non-fan is recommended). Or hotter if using a pizza stone.
- Score the top of dough with knife down the length of the dough.
- Add moisture to the oven (very important).
- Bake for 25-30 minutes at 200°C fan/220°C non-fan, until the crust is a golden brown.
- Cool on a rack. Enjoy with the family. Feed the cats. Not necessarily in that order.
Hints, Tips and Pictures
- See the hints and tips for the easy bloomer loaf recipe.
- During colder weather, the dough can be left covered in a safe place in the kitchen. In the summer, somewhere slightly cooler, e.g. cupboard under the stairs.
- When resting the dough, the aim is to get it to double in size. If you’re going to leave it for more than 8 hours before shaping and proving at the end, consider placing in a room where the central heating isn’t on.
- This process can also be used to prepare the dough in the evening, rest overnight and bake the following morning.