Another holiday out here today and l forgot. What is it this time? Actually, this is Pentecost Monday, and the brief recent history of this day is quite interesting. Click on the link to know more. So where does the bread-making thread come into it? Well, the shops are shut and we don’t have any bread so l made some. Actually, a few shops are open in the village in the morning but were closed by the time we realised we were out of bread.
When bread became rationed in WW2, many people turned their hand to making bread. Fresh yeast was difficult to come across but dried yeast was available. The recipe given by Marguerite Patten in her book Feeding the Nation: Nostalgic Recipes and Facts from 1940-1954, is exactly the same as used today and gives some interesting variations eg. Cheese Bread although that would have used up your cheese ration, Fruit Bread, Herb Bread and Malt Bread using malt extract or Ovaltine!
I make bread, from time to time, but can’t say it is something l do religiously but when l do l really enjoy it. There is something almost primeval when going through the whole process of making a loaf; from seeing the yeast develop, kneading the bread and watching the loaf rise, it is quite therapeutic and deeply satisfying. I feel like shouting out the window ‘Come on World, do your worst, l’ll be okay because l’ve just made a loaf of bread’!
So, for the recipe. I love using ‘proper’ flour and by that l mean a good old-fashioned flour like Doves Farm Organic Strong White Bread Flour. I bought a load when we were in the UK last time. I normally make a wholemeal loaf or Spelt bread but this time l just needed a quick loaf.
Click on this link for the recipe on Doves Farm website and for loads of information in general about bread.
Some people use bread makers and l am sure it makes a great loaf but l like a natural look to my bread so l just place it on an oiled baking sheet direct into a hot oven for 35-40 mins. or so.
Like any cooking at home you know what has gone into making the loaf that you bake. You also get the added bonus of your home filled with the beautiful aroma of freshly baked bread. All we need now are some people to come and view the house!