Tuesday, 28 April 2020

Organic Sourdough Baps

organic,sourdough,baps,scottish rolls

Eating healthy is something we should all do as much as possible and these Organic Sourdough Baps are full of flavour and are made with unprocessed ingredients free from pesticides and fertilizers, they take a little longer to make but are well worth the wait. I'm a converted organic nut, because organic flour produces better-tasting baked goods. Organic products may cost a lot more but the health benefits are worth it. The use of organic flour also reduces your carbon footprint and makes for a greener planet.

Organic Sourdough Baps are a bit more of a challenge in terms of getting the same volume compared to the more popular strong flours usually available on the supermarket shelves. The difference is in the milling of the wheat from the fields, so your usual popular strong flours are milled heavily and extract more of the wheatgerm leaving a cleaner whiter flour that has more gluten which makes the flour very strong and easy to work with. On the other hand the Organic flour is milled in a more traditional way using a slower pressing method which in turn leaves more of the wheat germ in the flour, so this makes it harder to get the same volume. In order to combat this I have portioned off the organic sourdough baps at 100g instead of the usal 70g to 75g.

organic, sourdough,

The obvious taste comparison between popular strong white flour and Organic white flour is self evident for me and you will know the difference once you taste them. To make these Organic sourdough baps even more flavoursome I have added a sourdough starter, and wow that sour flavour comes through nicely.

400g Organic Strong white flour (certified)
260g active starter (made from organic flour)
8g salt
4g sugar
1 sachet or 7g of fast dried active yeast
280ml warm water

Finished dough volume approximately 900g
9 x 100g

Oven Temperature
18 minutes total bake time
8 min @ 240C then 10 minutes @ 200C

Add all dry ingredients except dried yeast and combine together, then add dried yeast, put dry ingredients into your mixing bowl, then add your sourdough starter and start on low speed, add all the water and continue mixing for around a minute. Increase speed and mix for a further 4 minutes. Mould the dough into a cob shape and place into a glass bowl, cover with clingfilm or plastic bag and prove for about an hour and a half or doubled in size. 

Scale off your baps at around 100g each, rest for a minute then roll or shape into balls, slightly flatten then dip into flour, shake off excess flour and place onto prepared baking tray, press down again, but not to much, cover with a light t-towel and prove for 1 hour forty minutes to 2 hours, in a draft free warm place. 

Bake off in standard oven @ 240°C for 10 minutes then reduce to 200°C for another 8 minutes. If you want extra soft floury rolls then keep the oven temperature to 200°C for the whole 18 minutes. If you have fan assisted oven then reduce temps by 10 degrees. You will find your own times for your particular oven in time.

Sunday, 19 April 2020

Hazelnut ginger biscotti

Biscotti are such versatile biscuits and can be flavoured in a variety of ways. These ones have that added texture and crunchiness from the hazelnuts. Biscotti has its origins from the Italian city of Prato and means twice baked in English, it is also known as cantuccini or coffee bread. Without doubt it is best served with fresh coffee, so you can dip the Biscotti and enjoy an amazing blend of coffee and hazelnuts or whatever flavour you want to marry up. The process of making these Italian gems is very simple to do and the resulting crunchy Biscotti is sublime with a variety of dips, including chocolate. You won't be short of recipes for Biscotti as they abound throughout the web, so this recipe is very useful and versatile to me so that i can come back and try out different flavours.

I use whole and half hazelnut as it adds a different experience and looks great, but you can of course roughly dice up the walnuts. First off flash the hazelnuts through a hot oven and rub the skins off with a t-towel.

For the biscotti
500g/9oz spelt/plain flour
500g/9oz caster sugar
3 tsp baking powder
5 Large free-range eggs, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons ground ginger
200g whole hazelnuts (roughly chop if desired or half)

1 lemon, zest only (optional)

Prep Method
preheat the oven to 150C standard oven/140C for fan oven 
Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
Mix together and sieve the flour, sugar, ground ginger and baking powder, then add whole or chopped hazelnuts into a bowl until well combined.

Whisk in half of the beaten eggs until well combined. Gradually add the remaining beaten egg, a little at a time, making sure all of the egg has been fully incorporated into the mixture before adding more, you want the mixture to come together as a stiff dough. (*You may not need to use all of the egg.)

Chill overnight or around 3 to 4 hours

Divide the dough into six equal portions. Roll each portion into a sausage shape about 3cm/1¼in in diameter, using your hands. Gently flatten each portion of dough with the palm of your hand. Or if you prefer using a floured rolling pin, whatever is easier for you.

Place each dough 'sausage' onto the prepared baking tray, leaving a 6cm/2½in gap between each portion of dough to allow for expansion.

Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until pale golden-brown.

Remove the biscotti from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes to cool and firm up.
Using a serrated knife, cut 5cm/2in slices from the dough biscotti on the diagonal. Arrange the slices onto the lined baking tray and return them to the oven for a further 6-8 minutes.
Turn the biscotti over and continue to bake for 6-8 minutes, or until crisp and golden-brown. Set aside to cool on a wire rack.

These are good to go, but you can dip them in chocolate or spread them with nutella 

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Organic Poppy seed Sourdough

So it's back to 100% sourdough starter ..NO fast dried yeast this time, and she's a beauty. 

Here's my latest recipe update

500g Organic Strong white flour
10g salt
5g sugar
20g Rapeseed Oil (stonepressed *Local Scottish)
250g Lively active starter (wholemeal rye blend)
300ml tepid water

weigh off all ingredients and place into a machine bowl without the water (sin agua)
Next weigh off your starter and add to dry ingredients
then add your water.

Mix on low speed for a minute then increase to 2nd speed for another minute,
increase to 3rd speed for the remaining 3 minutes

Tip onto a floured surface and work the dough for another 2 minutes folding
the dough continuously. Place dough into big plastic tub with an airtight lid
and leave to prove for around 4 hours, or until more than doubled in size.

tip out onto a well floured surface and work the dough again folding it into
itself, shape it into a round cob and place onto a baking sheet, cover with a light
teatowel and leave in a draft free place (top oven on your cooker with the main
oven on very low)

Organic, Poppy seed, sourdough, cob

Final Prove around 2 & half hours depending on your location. get your oven
up as high as it will go (average oven 240C) make sure to place a container with water
on the bottom of your oven, and it has to be bubbling before you place your bread into the oven.

Score your bread however you like and bake on full heat 240C for 15 minutes then turn down
 the heat to 200C for the remaining 15 minutes. Enjoy! :)

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Happy Easter Hot Cross Buns

It's that time of year again, Happy Easter, hope your enjoying your chocolate eggs and Easter fair. Most people will be on lockdown and off work apart from essential frontline workers who are of course keeping us safe as we all are doing our bit. 

So here is my take on the traditional Easter Hot Cross Buns. The recipe is more or less what you would find in a standard Scottish bakery, but with the omission of fruit peel as i didn't have any at hand.

Easter Hot Cross Buns recipe

500g Strong bread flour
50g margarine or unsalted butter
50g caster sugar
350ml milk (semi skimmed or full fat)
2 teaspoons mixed spice or bun spice
grated zest of one lemon
7g sachet of fast active dried yeast (2 x 7g sachets) if you want faster proving times

For the crosses
50g plain flour
50ml water  (mix together until you get a smooth paste, then fill a piping bag)


Add all your ingredients apart from the liquid to your machine mixing bowl, incorporate, then add your liquid. 
1 minute on slow speed then increase to 2nd then 3, total time a minimum of 5 minutes.
Take finished dough out and knead it into a round shape, then place in a covered glass bowl and leave to prove for around an hour or until doubled in size.

Knock back your dough to get all the air out, then weigh to find your total weight divide by 12 then weigh off and shape into buns. Place onto a baking sheet and place a light tea towel over the buns. Find a nice draft free place and leave to prove for another hour and a half.

Turn your oven on to full with the water on the bottom of your oven at least half an hour before you need it.
Once the buns are fully proved pipe your crosses then quickly place your buns into the middle rack of your oven, taking care to watch out for burning steam.

Oven 220C for 1st 5 minutes then 200C for another 10 minutes
Place something to hold water on the bottom of your oven before you switch on your oven, you want to create plenty of hot steam. This will prevent a crust forming to early and allow the bun to expand.

Thanks for dropping by, leave a comment if you like.