- Uncomplicated recipes for fresh unfermented breads
- 9 ozs. fine wholemeal
- 1 egg
- a bare 1/2 pint milk and water
- butter size of walnut.
Put butter in a qr. qtn. tin (a small square-cornered tin price 6-1/2d. at
most ironmongers) and let it remain in hot oven until it boils. Well whisk
egg, and add to it the milk and water. Sift into this liquid the
wholemeal, stirring all the time. Pour this batter into the hot buttered
tin. Bake in a very hot oven for 50 minutes, then move to a cooler part
for another 50 minutes. When done, turn out and stand on end to cool.
COLD WATER BREAD
- 1-1/4 lb. fine wholemeal flour to 3/4 pint water
Put the meal into a basin, add the water gradually, and mix with a clean,
cool hand. (Bread, pastry, etc., mixed with a spoon, especially of metal,
will not be so light as that mixed with a light cool hand.) Knead lightly
for 20 minutes. (A little more flour may be required while kneading, as
some brands of meal do not absorb so much water as others, but do not add
more than is absolutely necessary to prevent the fingers sticking.) Put
the dough on to a floured board and divide into four round loaves. Prick
with a fork on top.
The colder the water used, the lighter the bread, and if the mixing be
done by an open window so much the better, for unfermented bread is
air-raised. Distilled or clean boiled rain-water makes the lightest bread.
But it should be poured backwards and forwards from one jug to another
several times, in order to aerate it.
Another method of mixing is the following: Put the water into the basin
first and stir the meal quickly into it with a spatula or wooden spoon.
When it gets too stiff to be stirred, add the rest of the meal. Knead for
two minutes, and shape into loaves as above.
Bake on the bare oven shelf, floored. If possible have a few
holes bored in the shelf. This is not absolutely necessary, but any tinker
or ironmonger will perforate your shelf for a few pence. Better still are
wire shelves, like sieves. (This does not apply to gas ovens.)
Start with a hot oven, but not too hot. To test, sprinkle a teaspoonful of
flour in a patty pan, and put in the oven for five minutes. At the end of
that time, if the flour is a light golden-brown colour, the oven is right.
Now put in the bread and keep the heat of the oven well up for half an
hour. At the end of this time turn the loaves. Now bake for another hour,
but do not make up the fire again. Let the oven get slightly cooler. The
same result may perhaps be obtained by moving to a cooler shelf. It all
depends on the oven. But always start with a hot oven, and after the first
half hour let the oven get cooler.
Always remember, that the larger the loaves the slower must be the baking,
otherwise they will be overdone on the outside and underdone in the middle.
Do not open the oven door oftener than absolutely necessary.
If a gas oven is used the bread must be baked on a baking sheet placed on
a sand tin. A sand tin is the ordinary square or oblong baking tin,
generally supplied with gas stoves, filled with silver sand. A baking
sheet is simply a piece of sheet-iron, a size smaller than the oven
shelves, so that the heat may pass up and round it. Any ironmonger will
cut one to size for a few pence. Do not forget to place a vessel of water
(hot) in the bottom of the oven. This is always necessary in a gas oven
when baking bread, cakes or pastry.
It must not be forgotten that ovens are like children they need
understanding. The temperature of the kitchen and the oven’s nearness to a
window or door will often make a difference of five or ten minutes in the
time needed for baking. One gas oven that I knew never baked well in
winter unless a screen was put before it to keep away draughts!
If you desire to get your bread more quickly it is only a question
of making smaller loaves. Little rolls may be cut out with a large egg-cup
or small pastry cutter, and these take any time from twenty minutes to
half an hour.
Put into a basin a pint of cold water, and beat it for a few minutes in
order to aerate it as much as possible. Stir gently, but quickly, into
this as much fine wholemeal as will make a batter the consistency of thick
cream. It should just drop off the spoon. Drop this batter into very hot
greased gem pans. Bake for half an hour in a hot oven. When done, stand on
end to cool. They may appear to be a little hard on first taking out of
the oven, but when cool they should be soft, light and spongy. When
properly made, the uninitiated generally refuse to believe that they do
not contain eggs or baking-powder.
There are proper gem pans, made of cast iron (from 1s.) for baking this
bread, and the best results are obtained by using them. But with a
favourable oven I have got pretty good results from the ordinary
baking-tins with depressions, the kind used for baking small cakes. But
these are a thinner make and apt to produce a tough crust.
HOT WATER ROLLS
This bread has a very sweet taste. It is made by stirring boiling water
into any quantity of meal required, sufficient to form a stiff paste. Then
take out of the basin on to a board and knead quickly with as much more
flour as is needed to make it workable. Cut it into small rolls with a
large egg-cup or small vegetable cutter. The quicker this is done the
better, in order to retain the heat of the water. Bake from 20 to 30
Mix medium oatmeal to a stiff paste with cold water. Add enough fine
oatmeal to make a dough. Roll out very thinly. Bake in sheets, or cut into
biscuits with a tumbler or biscuit cutter. Bake on the bare oven shelf,
sprinkled with fine oatmeal, until a very pale brown. Flour may be used in
place of the fine oatmeal, as the latter often has a bitter taste that
many people object to. The cause of this bitterness is staleness, but it
is not so noticeable in the coarse or medium oatmeal. Freshly ground
oatmeal is quite sweet.
- 1 lb. fine wholemeal
- 6 oz. raisins
- 2 oz. Mapleton’s nutter
Well wash the raisins, but do not stone them or the loaf will be heavy. If
the stones are disliked, seedless raisins, or even sultanas, may be used,
but the large raisins give rather better results. Rub the nutter into the
flour, add the raisins, which should be well dried after washing, and mix
with enough water to form a dough which almost, but not quite drops from
the spoon. Put into a greased tin, which should be very hot, and bake in a
hot oven at first. At the end of twenty minutes to half an hour the loaf
should be slightly browned. Then move to a cooler shelf, and bake until
done. Test with a knife as for ordinary cakes.
For this loaf a small, deep, square-cornered tin is required (price
6-1/2d.), the same as for the egg loaf. 3 ozs. fresh dairy butter may be
used in place of the 2 ozs. nutter.
Into 1 lb. wholemeal flour rub 4 ozs. nutter or 5 ozs. butter. Mix to a
stiff dough with cold water. Knead lightly but well. Shape into small buns
about 1 inch thick. Bake for an hour in a moderate oven.