We have lost many a friend because of my breads, so you can naturally understand my fear of baking bread. But I guess I was going through a fearless phase of my life during last X’mas, because I decided to celebrate the year end with yeasted breads.
And surprisingly they came out fine! And more surprisingly, I liked them. (As a rule, I don’t like anything I make. I am my biggest critic).
This dense fruit bread was from the book ‘The Essential Book of Baking’ by Murdoch books. This book is my main baking guru. I have tried a lot of recipes from this book and till now I have never had a failure.
This is my first entry for Blogging Marathon 25, a very special edition for all marathoners! This is under the theme ‘Cooking from Cook Books’.
Recipe Source: The Essential Baking Book
Makes: 3 small breads or 1 large
- All purpose Flour : 3 1/2 cups
- Yeast : 2 tsp
- Warm water : 1 1/4 cup
- Sugar : 1 tsp
- Raisins : 1 cup
- Tutti Frutti : 1/2 cup( or mixed peel)
- Butter : 25 gm
- Caster Sugar : 1/3 cup
- Ground Ginger : 1/2 tsp
- Salt : 1/4 tsp
- Dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water and leave aside for 10 minutes to foam up. If the yeast doesn’t foam, your loaf will be hard, so discard and start again with a fresh batch.
- In a big bowl, add the ap flour, salt and ground ginger. Rub in the butter with your finger tips till you get a crumb like consistency. Add 3/4 th of the caster sugar and mix. Make a well in the centre and add the yeast mixture. Bring everything together into a dough and knead for 10 minutes in a slightly floured surface till you get a smooth elastic ball consistency.
- Place this in a clean, well oiled bowl. Cover and leave to rest for an hour or so, until the dough doubles in size.
- Take out the dough, add the fruits and knead for a couple minutes until its all incorporated well. Shape into a large loaf (I shaped into three small loafs) and leave to rise for about 40 minutes, until it doubles up in size.
- Preheat the oven to 200C and bake the bread for 40 minutes until its golden in color and sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Let the bread cool.
- Mix the remaining caster sugar with a tablespoon of hot water. Brush this over the loaf. I baked this for 2 more minutes per the instructions, but the icing sugar turned all white and I had to rub it off.
- Slice and serve.