English cottage bread
Recipe for english cottage bread
⚠ Note: for metric to imperial (or vice-versa) conversion please refer to our article on Cooking Measurements 101.
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400g high protein/bread flour
100g all-purpose flour, sifted
60g castor sugar
2 tsp/10g salt
20g milk powder
3 tsp/10g instant yeast
1 tsp bread improver
60g butter/margarine, unsalted
- Combine both flours, castor sugar, milk powder, instant yeast, egg, water and bread improver in a mixing bowl. Use dough hook of your stand mixer to knead the mixture at low speed (Speed 1 of Kenwood). When all ingredients are just combined, add salt and continue to knead until the surface of dough looks smooth. This process takes about 8 minutes.
- Add butter or margarine. Use medium-low (Speed 1.5) speed to continue kneading dough for about 10 minutes. Increase to medium-high speed (Speed 2) and knead for further 10 minutes. The dough should be elastic, smooth, non-sticky and pull away from the sides of the bowl. To test, stretch a pinch of dough. This dough should form a thin membrane before it breaks.
- Form the dough into a ball. Place dough in a greased stainless steel bowl and cover with a damp tea towel. Leave in warm place for about 1 hour until doubled in size. Use the “finger-tip” test to check if the dough has fully risen.
- Punch the dough down to release gases produced in the proving process. Divide into 2 portions, roll into balls and rest for 5 minutes.
- Roll each one into a long strip and roll into a swiss-roll. Roll the dough length wise and roll into a swiss-roll again. Repeat for the other dough. With the seam side down, place them in a greased loaf tin, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to rise for 30 minutes.
- At the meantime, preheat oven at 200 degC.
- When finished rising, spread some butter on top of the bread dough. Sprinkle sugar on to butter.
- Bake for 30 minutes. When done, leave the loaf in tin for 5 minutes before turning it onto a wire rack.
- Only start slicing when the loaf has fully cool. Consume within 2 days.
- In general for all breads making, the amount of liquid (eggs and water in this recipe) is variable. It depends on types of flour used, type of liquid used, temperature and humidity of atmosphere at the time of making the bread. You may need to adjust the water content of a particular recipe accordingly. As far as this recipe is concerned, keep water amount of sponge at 180ml but adjust the milk amount in (B).
- Salt has deteriorating effect on the yeast. We always add it in only after all the rest of the ingredients are well incorporated.
- Make sure all ingredients are in room temperature before using them. However, it is advised to place the dough at warm places during the rising process. Yeast activity is very much depending on the surrounding temperature. We always try to make bread in the afternoon. The result is always satisfying.
- After the punch down, remember not to knead the dough.
Reference: English cottage bread
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