No matter what the current trend, we always return to the simple joy of bread. Most of us remember a time when bread and milk were at the top of our daily shopping lists and when breaking bread was the first thing we did when gathering around a table. You could be a government loaf, a low-GI seeded bun, or a charcoal-infused ciabatta – but bread is central to our existence, and I for one believe it deserves another moment in the spotlight. This recipe is my go-to, no-mess-no-fuss, can’t-fail skoolbroodjie that you can bake in anything from a loaf tin (a classic choice), an old jam tin (blikkiesbrood) or a pot (potbrood). In other words, my ultimate homemade bread recipe.
SIMPLE HOMEMADE BREAD
PREP TIME: 3 hours (including rising of dough) | BAKING TIME: 45 minutes | SERVES: 10 (give or take)
625 g Snowflake cake wheat flour
7 ml salt
15 ml sugar
1 x 10 g packet instant yeast
450 ml water, at room temperature
Place the flour, salt, sugar and yeast in the mixing bowl of a electric mixer. Use the dough hook and mix all dry ingredients together.
Add water gradually while the machine is running, until the dough is nice and soft. Knead the dough for at least 15 minutes, until it pulls away from edge of the bowl.
Place the dough in a clean bowl and rub the top of the dough with a bit of sunflower oil to prevent it drying. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let it rise to double its volume. The rising time of the dough will always depend on how cold or hot the room is. On a warm day it could double in size much quicker than on a cold day.
Once the dough has doubled in volume, heat the oven to 180 °C. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead again.
Spray a round cast-iron casserole pot (2,4 liter – 20 cm) with non-stick spray and place the dough inside. Rub some sunflower oil on top of the dough and cover the pot with a damp cloth. Let the bread dough rise until it reaches the edge of the pot.
Place it in the oven and bake for 35 – 45 minutes. When you knock on the top of the the bread and hear a hollow sound, your bread is ready to take out of the oven.