Tag Archives: bread

20140419_131427

Hot Cross Buns

I nearly fainted while I was grocery shopping a few weeks ago when I saw Hot Cross Buns, 4 for $8!!!!  Whaaatttt????  $8 for only 4 Hot Cross Buns???  Honesty, I don’t care whose name is on them, if they’re not making it for me personally, they’re not finding their way into my shopping trolley!  Besides, according to my Minion Kids and Minion Hubby, mine taste much better than store bought!

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Hot Cross Buns

Ingredients

  • 1kg bread flour (if you can’t find bread flour, make sure you get a bakers’ flour or strong flour)
  • 21g dried yeast
  • 450ml milk, warmed
  • Finely grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 3 tsps mixed spice
  • 2 – 4 tsp fine salt (to your own taste, I only ever use 2)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • Extra Ingredients:
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 1 tbsp melted butter
  • Enough water to make a piping consistency paste
  • For glaze:
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup water

Instructions

  1. Method: I always use a mixer for this. You could do it by hand, however as you all know, I’m a lazy baker and the mixer is always easier!!
  2. In a large bowl, place 350g of the bread flour, yeast and 450ml warm milk. Beat on medium speed for 3 – 4 minutes until sticky. Cover with cling wrap and a tea towel and allow to double in size, approximately 30 minutes.
  3. Add lemon rind, mixed spice, salt, eggs and honey and mix together with a dough hook.
  4. Add remaining 650g bread flour and butter. Mix with a dough hook at low speed until it comes together as almost dough.
  5. How you do this step depends on whether or not you’re a fruit or not person! We don’t do fruit or mixed peel in our Hot Cross Buns, so I skip adding the extras! Remove dough from bowl onto a lightly floured board. Spread out and add 1 cup currants and 1/2 cup mixed peel. Knead thoroughly until it’s a smooth dough. Put into a lightly greased bowl and allow to rise for approximately 45 minutes to an hour.
  6. Divide the dough into 24 buns and roll into balls – this will be easier if you dust your hands with flour first. Arrange close together on lined baking trays so they will end up touching when they are baking. Cover with cling wrap and a tea towel and set aside to rise for 30 minutes.
  7. Brush each bun with beaten egg. Add plain flour and melted butter to the remaining egg and mix well. Add enough water to this mix to make a piping consistency paste. Pipe the paste across the buns to make a cross – I find it easy just to pipe one long line across all of them in each direction.
  8. Bake at 180°C for approxiately 25 – 30 minutes.
  9. While buns are baking, make a glaze with caster sugar and water. Boil until sugar has dissolved and brush buns immediately after taking out of the oven, while they are still hot.
  10. Spread with butter, watch it melt and chow down!!! Hide the rest of the buns from the family, and you may just have enough left for the next day!
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It was very hard not to get stuck into these straight away!  I ended up scoffing half a bun before I could drag myself away long enough to take a photo!

 

 

* Originally posted on April 19, 2014

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Back to School!

These past few weeks have been more than a little bit frantic with the kids going back to school after holidays and hubby going to stay with my folks for a few weeks to work on a commissioned art piece.

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I know that I can get a little lazy when it comes to school snacks when it comes to hectic times, so this time around I pushed myself to get some baking done instead of cheating and buying snacks instead.

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So last week, I made Banana and Oat Muffins, Rolled Oat Slice and Banana Bread (recipe courtesy of Mrs K., a long standing loyal client turned friend!).  This particular Banana Bread recipe never lasts long in our house, although I did manage to save about ¼ of it to send with hubby, along with ½ a dozen muffins.

I’m sure I’ll find myself back in the kitchen at some time this week . . . in between washing, mowing and taking the Minions to visit their Daddy!

* Originally posted on the 16th October 2013

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Banana Bread – Quick, Easy and Delicious!

 

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Banana Bread – Quick, Easy and Delicious!

Ingredients

  • 115g softened butter
  • ¾ cup caster sugar
  • 3 ripe medium bananas, mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 ½ cups self-raising flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (170°C), and prepare a loaf tin. You can either line it with baking paper, or prepare with butter and flour.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter, vanilla and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time (mixing well between each egg).
  3. Add the flour and bananas and mix well until smooth.
  4. Put into the prepared loaf tin, and bake for approximately 40 minutes until golden. Use a skewer to make sure your banana bread is cooked through.
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* Originally posted on 16th October 2013

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Baking Day!

When my brother and I were kids, we used to spend at least one weekend a month, and plenty of holidays with my grandparents.  On Sunday mornings, my Pop would walk up to the local corner store – it was one of those fantastic corner stores selling everything from fresh bread to bait! – to get a couple of loaves of freshly baked bread.  My brother and I would wake up to the morning sounds of my parents and my grandparents making coffee and toast.  There was nothing I loved more than walking down to find Nanna and Pop sprinkling cinnamon sugar on toast for us kids (we were only allowed this particular treat at my grandparents’ house).  It’s one of my best memories of them.

Now, as an adult with my own family, hubby and I have instilled our love chowing down on fresh baked bread in our little Minions, and trust me this can get expensive!  Especially when this Minion loves getting the uncut loaves so I can slice my own lovely thick slices, and then smother them with butter and vegemite . . . yum!

Today, there is an extra Minion in our house, so I’ve decided to escape the high-pitched girlish giggles and spend the day making my arms ache . . .

Fresh baked bread

Ingredients:

7g dried yeast

275ml warm water

500g good quality plain flour (I like to use bread flour)

5g bread improver

1tsp salt

2tbsp powdered milk (this is optional, however my family can really taste the difference if I don’t use it!)

Method:

Preheat your oven slightly – just to warm it up a bit.

Add dried yeast to warm water in a small jug.  Mix it with a fork, just enough to wet all the yeast.  Leave it to sit while you prepare the dry ingredients.

In a large bowl, place plain flour bread improver, salt and powdered milk.  Make a well in the centre, and add the yeast and water mix (by this time, it should have started to foam a bit).  Mix until well combined.

Take your dough out of the bowl and knead on a floured surface for 10-15 minutes until the dough is soft and stretchy.  As I mentioned in ‘Stupid cars and yummy pies’, I’m lazy in the kitchen so I do this part in my mixer using the dough hook.  I’ve found that I only need to ‘knead’ the dough for about 8 minutes in the mixer instead of hand kneading for 10-15 minutes – and my upper arms thank me for it!

Put in a greased bowl, cover with a clean tea towel and allow to rise until double in size

 

Place the dough into a lightly oiled large bowl.  Cover with a clean tea towel, and leave it to rise in your warmed oven (make sure you’ve turned it off!) until doubled in size.  This can take up to 2 hours.

 

After the dough has doubled in size, turn it out on to a lightly floured surface.  Knock back the dough by lightly kneading it for 2-3 minutes, then shape into whatever shape you would like.  I usually go for just a round or oval shaped loaf, and you can also use a loaf tin if you have one.

DSCF5535Place the shaped loaf on a baking tray which has been oiled, or lined with baking paper and dusted with flour.  Make 3 or 4 slashes across the top with a sharp knife, brush the top of the loaf with some salted water, then sprinkle with some more flour.  You could use sesame seeds or poppy seeds or even go without any of it if you prefer!  Cover with a clean tea towel and leave to rise until doubled in size (the extra flour will help make sure the tea towel doesn’t stick to your dough).

Preheat your oven to 240°C (230°C fan forced).

Place your shaped loaf in the centre of the oven and bake for 8 minutes.  Open the oven door slightly, and bake for a further 2 minutes with the door open.

Reduce the heat to 190°C (180°C), close the door and bake for a further 25 – 30 minutes (if you want a darker crust, just keep a close eye on your bread from this stage until the crust is to your personal liking).  You’ll know when your bread is cooked when it makes a hollow sound when you rap your knuckles on the crust.

Slice – thickly if you’re one of our Minions! – butter and enjoy!

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Baking Day!

Ingredients

  • 7g dried yeast
  • 275ml warm water
  • 500g good quality plain flour (I like to use bread flour)
  • 5g bread improver
  • 1tsp salt
  • 2tbsp powdered milk (this is optional, however my family can really taste the difference if I don’t use it!)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven slightly – just to warm it up a bit.
  2. Add dried yeast to warm water in a small jug. Mix it with a fork, just enough to wet all the yeast. Leave it to sit while you prepare the dry ingredients.
  3. In a large bowl, place plain flour bread improver, salt and powdered milk. Make a well in the centre, and add the yeast and water mix (by this time, it should have started to foam a bit). Mix until well combined.
  4. Take your dough out of the bowl and knead on a floured surface for 10-15 minutes until the dough is soft and stretchy. As I mentioned in ‘Stupid cars and yummy pies’, I’m lazy in the kitchen so I do this part in my mixer using the dough hook. I’ve found that I only need to ‘knead’ the dough for about 8 minutes in the mixer instead of hand kneading for 10-15 minutes – and my upper arms thank me for it!
  5. Place the dough into a lightly oiled large bowl. Cover with cling film and a tea towel, and leave it to rise in your warmed oven (make sure you’ve turned it off!) until doubled in size. This can take up to 2 hours.
  6. After the dough has doubled in size, turn it out on to a lightly floured surface. Knock back the dough by lightly kneading it for 2-3 minutes, then shape into whatever shape you would like. I usually go for just a round or oval shaped loaf, and you can also use a loaf tin if you have one.
  7. Place the shaped loaf on a baking tray which has been oiled, or lined with baking paper and dusted with flour. Make 3 or 4 slashes across the top with a sharp knife, brush the top of the loaf with some salted water, then sprinkle with some more flour. You could use sesame seeds or poppy seeds or even go without any of it if you prefer! Cover with a clean tea towel and leave to rise until doubled in size (the extra flour will help make sure the tea towel doesn’t stick to your dough).
  8. Preheat your oven to 240°C (230°C fan forced).
  9. Place your shaped loaf in the centre of the oven and bake for 8 minutes. Open the oven door slightly, and bake for a further 2 minutes with the door open.
  10. Reduce the heat to 190°C (180°C), close the door and bake for a further 25 – 30 minutes (if you want a darker crust, just keep a close eye on your bread from this stage until the crust is to your personal liking). You’ll know when your bread is cooked when it makes a hollow sound when you rap your knuckles on the crust.

If you use bread flour, you don't need to use the bread improver.

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* Originally posted on 4th October, 2013