Mini French Baguettes

Bread week challenge number 2! Mini French baguettes – Paul Hollywood style!

Ingredients:

  • 250g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 5g salt
  • 5g instant yeast
  • 180ml cool water
  • Olive oil for kneading

Method:

  1. Add the flour to a bowl and put the salt on one side of the bowl and the yeast on the other. Mix the dry ingredients together.
  2. Pour water in slowly and mix together using your hands.
  3. Knead dough until its elastic and can stretch to around 30cm long – this takes about 20 minutes
  4. Leave in an oiled bowl covered in cling film for around 2 hours.
  5. Tip the dough onto an floured and semolia’d surface and knock the air out of it using your knuckles.
  6. Divide the dough into 2 pieces. Shape each piece into an oblong by flattening the dough out slightly and folding the sides into the middle. Then roll each up into a sausage – the top should be smooth with ha join running along the length of the base. Now, beginning in the middle, roll each sausage with your hands.
  7. Place the baguettes on the baking tray. Put each tray inside a clean plastic bag and leave to prove for about 1 hour, until the dough is at least doubled in size and springs back quickly if you prod it lightly with your finger. Meanwhile, heat your oven to 220°C and put a roasting tray in the bottom to heat up.
  8. When your baguettes are risen and light, dust them lightly with flour. Then slash each one 3 times along its length on the diagonal, using a razor blade or a very sharp knife. Fill the roasting tray with hot water to create steam and put the bread into the oven. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the baguettes are golden brown and have a slight sheen. Cool on a wire rack.

These were surprisingly easy to make and super yummy straight from the oven! Enjoy! I’m slightly behind on my GBBO challenges so watch this space for crème brulees and even more! x

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Crumpets!

 

Our staff meeting at work was set for 10am last Friday and what better way to start a morning meeting but with fresh buttery crumpets! So I decided to make my first ever batch of crumpets – using none other than Mr Paul Hollywood’s recipe taken from his BREAD cook book. They were surprisingly easy to make BUT when I do them again I will make sure I have a lazy day to cook them as I have discovered they like a constant medium heat rather than a quick hot flash in the pan! (Coming back from watching something at the theatre at 10.30pm then making them was probably not the best idea)

Ingredients:

  • 175g strong white bread flour
  • 175g plain white flour
  • 14g fast action dried yeast
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 350ml warm milk
  • 150-200ml tepid water
  • 1/2 tsp bicarb of soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Sunflower oil for cooking

Method:

  1. Put both flours in a bowl and mix in the yeast. In a jug dissolve the sugar in the warm milk, then pour onto the flour mixture. Beat the mixture with a wooden spoon until you have a smooth batter. This will take 3-4 minutes and is hard work!
  2. Cover the bowl with cling film and stand for about an hour. The mixture will rise and fall – this shows the gluten has developed enough for the crumpets to hold their shape (Sorry Gluten free people! I promise to find some gluten free recipes soon)
  3. In a jug mix 150ml of the tepid water with the bicarb of soda and salt. Stir this liquid into the batter until evenly combined. Then gradually stir in as much of the remaining water as you need to get a thick dropping consistency. Cover the bowl and leave the batter to rest for about 20 minutes. Little holes will appear on the surface.
  4. Heat a pan or griddle on a medium-low heat. Lightly grease the inside of your crumpet rings (This is where my gingerbread cutters came in handy) and the pan.
  5. Ladle in some batter to the cutter (I ladled about 3 tablespoons) and leave it to cook for 6-8 minutes. When the bubbles on the top look nearly set use a spatula and palette knife to turn it over and cook for a few minutes on the other side.
  6. Cook the crumpets in batches and enjoy warm with some butter or jam or both! 🙂

Thanks for reading, please try out this recipe and let me know how it goes xx