Simple Spelt Loaf
PREP TIME: 20mins
COOKING TIME: 40mins
A versatile everyday loaf, best eaten fresh on the day but makes wonderful toast the next day. Don’t be afraid or reluctant of spelt flour, its not a ‘hippy’ flour, but rather nutty and 100% full of flavour than its’ white cousin. (see notes).
These quantities will provide a small loaf, enough for 4, double the quantities for a larger loaf
Prep time 15min Rest time 2 hours and Baking time 40minutes
Butter & Fig Jam & Fig Jam and Cheese or just Fig Jam
What you'll need:
Heavy Based Cast Iron 20cm Pot
- 320ml warm water
- 2 teaspoons honey *
- 1 teaspoon dried yeast
- 450g spelt flour (I use 50 wholewheat spelt /50 plain)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 50g olive oil
*vegan: replace with sugar
- Place the water, honey and yeast in a jug and combine – set aside
- Place the flour & salt in a bowl and mix
- Add the oil to the yeast mixture
- Gradually add the yeast mixture to the bowl with flour and stir with your hand until a dough forms, the dough will be quite loose and wet. It will firm up as you start kneading.
- Dust a work surface lightly with flour and tip the dough onto the work surface
- Knead until a smooth and soft dough forms – its going to take some time – give it 10 minutes- yes a workout!
- Transfer the dough to a large lightly greased bowl and cover with kitchen wrap.
- DOUGH RISE : set aside in a warm place for 1 or 2 hours until the dough has doubled in size
- Pre-heat oven to its highest setting (240c)
- Place the pot in the oven at the same time and should stay in the oven for at least 30minutes prior to baking to get REALLY hot
- The dough should have risen a fair bit and should look puffy and bubbly
- Cut a square with greaseproof paper big enough to sit into the pot quite snugly and flour with a few tablespoons of flour
- Wet your hands a bit and scrape the dough out into the floured greaseproof paper
- Clear the kitchen of little ones and only now, take the pot out of the oven (its hot!)
- Gently lift the dough into the pot
- Wearing gloves, close the lid and bake for 22 minutes
- After 22minutes remove the lid and put back into the oven, placing the HOT LID somewhere out of reach and out of touch
- Bake for another 5 minutes, the bread should be golden & crispy and hollow when knocked
- Place on a wire rack to cool down
Alternatively you can make the dough in a electric mixer with a dough hook attachment, if you are lucky or the dough setting in your Thermomix if you are extremely lucky
NEW INGREDIENT: ANCIENT GRAIN SPELT
Classified as an Ancient Grain as its been cultivated since 5000 BC. Spelt is a type of wheat, so in fact not gluten free, this ancient grain is however easier to digest than normal wheat flours and for some a better choice than conventional flours. Spelt has a nutty taste, is whole grain and full of fibre. Like normal wheat flour, you get a white variety and a wholegrain variety and they react the same way as any conventional flour. White will be more versatile and result in a ‘fluffier’ loaf and wholegrain will be full of flavour but the texture of the bread will be more dense. You can use spelt interchangeably as a replacement for conventional flours.
ESSENTIAL COOKING SKILL: Kneading dough