Super Speedy Spelt Bread
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Makes: 1 loaf
Takes: 1 hour (including proving)
Bakes: Under 1 hour
500g spelt flour
300 ml water
40 ml oil (vegetable, sunflower, even light olive)
Handful of sunflower seeds (optional)
- Mix the dry ingredients together by hand.
2. Add the water and oil, and bring the mixture together by hand until you have a cohesive lump of dough. Try and pick up as much of the material on the sides of the bowl as possible, as this will stop you getting dry crusty bits later.
3. Rub a little bit of oil onto your hand and smooth onto the orb of dough, cover the bowl with a clean tea towel or cling film and leave in a warm place for 20 minutes.
4. Flour a work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Knead the dough by pushing it away from you with the heel of your hand, and then folding it back on itself. Do this for a couple of minutes and the dough will be noticeably smoother and slightly springier. If you want to add seeds, do it now, and work them through the dough by continuing to knead until they are (roughly) evenly distributed.
• If you’re baking inside a loaf tin, put the dough into the loaf tin now, and leave to rise for about an hour.
• If you’re baking inside a casserole dish, and have a proving basket, flour the proving basket liberally and place the dough in it. Cover and leave for an hour.
• If you’re baking inside a casserole dish, and don’t have a proving basket, flour the base of the casserole dish, shape the dough into a cob shape, and place in the dish. Cover and leave for an hour.
5. Pre-heat your oven to 220°C. If you are proving your bread in a bannetone (proving basket) or loaf tin you can place your casserole dish in the oven to pre-heat. Don’t do this if there’s already a loaf inside it.
• If you’re proving inside a loaf tin, remove the casserole dish from the oven, slash the top of the loaf a couple of times with a sharp knife (I find this easiest to do with a floured bread knife), and carefully place the loaf tin in the casserole dish. Put the lid on the casserole dish and place in oven.
• If you’re proving in a proving basket, flour the base of the (hot!) casserole dish, turn your proving basket over the dish in one smooth movement, and let the bread fall heavily into the dish. Slash the top carefully, making sure you don’t burn your wrists. Put the lid on the casserole dish and place in oven.
• If you’re proving in the casserole dish, slash the top of the loaf with a sharp knife in whatever pattern you want. Put the lid on the casserole dish and place in oven.
6. After 20 minutes, remove the lid form the casserole dish, and turn the oven down to 200°C. Bake for another 20-30 minutes. The crust should be firm and a deep brown. Allow to cool completely before removing from the dish.