How to make homemade bread

Discover the joys of homemade bread!

March 2020 • Jules Verne

Bread-making may seem intimidating but it doesn’t have to be; learn how to make you own white, rye or tiger bread with Jules Verne.

Easy White Bread

The perfect everyday loaf. Makes 1 loaf.

INGREDIENTS

  • 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 7g fast-action yeast
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 300ml water

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix 500g strong white flour, 2 tsp salt and a 7g sachet of fast-action yeast in a large bowl.
  2. Make a well in the centre, then add 3 tbsp olive oil and 300ml water, and mix well. If the dough seems a little stiff, add another 1-2 tbsp water and mix well.
  3. Tip onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for around 10 mins.
  4. Once the dough is satin-smooth, place it in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film. Leave to rise for 1 hour until doubled in size or place in the fridge overnight.
  5. Line a baking tray with baking parchment. Knock back the dough (punch the air out and pull the dough in on itself) then gently mouth the dough into a ball.
  6. Place it on the baking parchment to prove for a further hour until doubled in size.
  7. Heat over to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7.
  8. Dust the loaf with some extra flour and cut a cross about 6cm long onto the top of the loaf with a sharp knife.
  9. Bake for 25-30 mins until golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped underneath. Cool on a wire rack.

Rye Bread

For a loaf with bolder flavour, try this hearty rye bread recipe. Makes 1 loaf.

INGREDIENTS

  • 200g rye flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 200g strong white or wholemeal flour
  • 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • ½ tsp fine salt
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp caraway seed (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Tip the flours, yeast and salt into a bowl. In a jug, mix the honey with 250ml warm water, pour the liquid into the bowl and mix to form a dough. Rye flour can be quite dry and absorbs a lot of water, if the dough looks too dry add more warm water until you have a soft dough. Tip out onto your work surface and knead for 10 mins until smooth. Rye contains less gluten than white flour so the dough will not feel as springy as a conventional white loaf.
  2. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1-2 hrs, or until roughly doubled in size. Dust a 2lb/900g loaf tin with flour.
  3. Tip the dough back onto your work surface and knead briefly to knock out any air bubbles. If using caraway seeds work these in to the dough. Shape into a smooth oval load and pop into your tin. Cover the tin with oiled cling film and leave to rise somewhere warm for a further 1 – 1.5hr, or until doubled in size.
  4. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Remove the cling film and dust the surface of the loaf with rye flour. Slash a few incisions on an angle then bake for 30 mins until dark brown and hollow sounding when tapped. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and leave to cool for at least 20 mins before serving.

Tiger Bread

With its iconic crackled crust and pillowy centre, create this supermarket favourite at home. Makes 10-12 slices.

INGREDIENTS

  • 500g strong white flour, plus extra for kneading
  • 7g fast-action yeast
  • 1 ½ tsp caster sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 300-350ml warm water
  • Vegetable oil, for the bowl

For the topping

  • 90g rice flour
  • ½ x 7g sachet fast-action yeast
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp golden caster sugar
  • ½ tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 90ml warm water

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Tip the flour into a large mixing bowl. Stir though the yeast, sugar and salt. Make a well in the middle and gradually pour in the water. Swiftly mix together, then turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the bread for 8-10 mins or until smooth and elastic. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl, then put the dough in the bowl, cover and leave in a warm place for 1 hr or until doubled in size.
  2. Once the dough has risen, tip it onto a worktop and knead it three times. Shape the dough into an oval as best you can. Lightly flour a baking sheet and sit the loaf on it. Cover loosely with lightly oiled cling film and leave for a further 45 mins-1 hr or until doubled in size again.
  3. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Whisk together all of the topping ingredients in a small bowl until you get a spreadable paste, adding more water and/or flour if necessary, then set aside to rest for 5 mins. Gently spread the mixture over the loaf with a palette knife. Place the baking sheet in the centre of the oven and bake for 35 mins. Once cooked, the loaf should sound hollow when the base is tapped and should feel light for its size. Leave to cool completely before cutting into slices.