I think I really want to tell you about this. I made my first homemade bread! I was thinking about making homemade bread for a while. Actually, it was since our housemates had moved away together with their bread machine. It has been about 4 or 5 months now. I love the smell of freshly baked bread in the morning. It is very easy to make a bread using a bread machine, however it is less easy using your hands and an oven. I guess, that is why it took me so long to get myself to do it! :)
Even though it did not go that well, it was even more fun. My boyfriend and I were very thrilled how it would be like. I might even share the recipe and you can tell me what was wrong. My first tip, about what could be blamed, apart from my inexperience in this area, is the yeast.
I used a dried fast action bread yeast. And to be honest, I am not still sure how to use it properly.
I have ever only used a fresh yeast. It was the only form of yeast I could buy in Czech Republic. I can confess here, it was not always the best success neither. I can very clearly remember the day, when I called my mum to ask her, how should I activate my yeast. I got the answer that fresh yeast is a living organism and it must be handled in the right way in order to work properly. For example, it needs food to become active and its favourite food is sugar. Than it needs warmth and moist. And the warmth is really meant to be warm not hot, as I found out lately.
After a half an hour when my yeast was supposed to proof it is still alive and active by producing little bubbles, nothing really happened. The surface of my yeast liquid was still, mirror-like. Not a good sign. I called my mum again, describing the state of the yeast. "You killed it...!", I heard. Gosh! "Was the milk warm or hot?" she asked. Well, it might have been a little bit more warm, maybe hot? "Oh yes, you killed it!", she said. "Ok, what am I supposed to do know?", I asked. "It is dead now, you have to start again." Luckily, I only used a half of it, so I started again. I made sure the milk was really only warm, not hot. And it worked! Yippee!! :)
I should have probably said, that the bread was actually quite good, definitely tasty, though it was a bit tough for my taste. I think the dough did not rise properly. Anyway, for the first try not that bad result. Definitely not bad enough to keep me away from trying again!
Here is the recipe I used.
250g strong bread flour
150g wholemeal bread flour
50g pumpkin seeds
50g sunflower seeds
2 dl lukewarm water
7g dried yeast
1 tsp ground coriander and ground cumin
1 garlic clove, crashed
1/2 tsp salt
1 Mix the yeast and water and let the yeast to dissolve. In a bowl mix together both flours. Add the salt, spices and garlic. Pour in the mixture of the yeast. Stir well and knead the dough for 15 minutes until smooth. Now add the seeds, and knead to incorporate. Sprinkle the dough with flour, cover with a towel, and let rise for an hour in a warm place until it is doubled.
2 Divide the dough to two portions and form two loaves. Place the loaves on a baking tray lined with a baking paper, and let the loaves to rise again for about 20 minutes.
3 Bake in a preheated oven to 170C for about 40 minutes.