Somehow, over the course of Summer, a little bit of something was left at the back of my fridge for a rather long time.
Usually in these instances, the slovenly housewife is alerted to her sluttiness by way of some sort of stench, a subtle suggestion that some sort of stint in housewifely duties is well overdue.
When I did venture into the depths of the bottom shelf, I found a bag.
And in that bag, was bread.
I racked my brain trying to work out when I had last bought supermarket bread.
Looks like new, huh? Still shows a floury crust. Still shows cleanly sliced olives.
And get this – IT DOESN’T FEEL LIKE A BRICK. In fact, it depresses and squishes quite easily beyond that floury crust.
It seems this is the last remains of an olive loaf that I had schlepped home to make emergency lunches or something.
Back in December.
True – take a look at the date.
And just to prove I am not a faking fibber, Here’s the bread and the label together.
Look at that ingredient list.
And not a trace of mould anywhere.
Magic marvel bread!
Supermarket bread, anyone?
I’ve been making my own bread a lot in recent weeks.
I can control what goes into it, and I can guarantee it’s a whole lot less than what seems to appear on that long list of science ingredients.
Of course it only lasts 2 days or so – 3 max – but isn’t that what bread’s supposed to do?
You know – like ‘give us this day our daily bread’ sorta thing.
So, here’s my recipe for Basil Cheese Loaf.
My son calls it green cheese bread because I blitz the basil first and the cheese afterwards, which turns the cheese green.
It’s made on spelt, which means most people who can’t eat wheat can eat this, but of course, not good for coeliacs. I manage it well and I have a wheat intolerance.
I make the dough in my Thermomix, but you can use the old fashioned method just as well, just vary your flour as you feel the dough.
Basil Cheese Loaf
100g whole grain spelt
420g spelt flour
300g warmed water
2 teaspoons dried yeast
1.5 teaspoons salt
20g macadamia oil
1 cup loose basil leaves
150 grams cheddar or other desired cheese
Basil flower or additional basil leaves for garnish
Put all basil leaves into the bowl, whiz for 4-5 seconds on sp 6. Tip these out into a separate bowl.
Put all the cheese into the bowl, and blitz on 6 – 8 seconds, speed 8.
Add cheese to basil and reserve 1/4 of the cheese to one side. Scrape out the jug.
Place spelt grains into the bowl and mill for 1 minute on speed 9.
Add the warmed water, followed by the yeast, salt, oil, flour bowl and mix for 6 – 8 seconds on speed 6 to combine.
Check the mix – this dough should be slightly sticky, right on that ‘is this too sticky?’ point.
Add the basil cheese mix to the bowl.
Knead for 2 minutes on Interval speed.
Tip the dough into a floured bread tin. For a rustic look, tip onto a floured tray and mould into desired shape using lightly floured hands.I prefer to use a bread tin for this dough as it is quite sticky and as it has not had a separate first rise, it isn’t stretchy yet. Plus, when the cheese is used to top the loaf it oozes down the sides of the loaf and makes a nice parmesan crust….
Allow loaf to rise in a warm position until it’s around double the size.
Take the remaining 1/4 cup cheese and sprinkle over the risen dough.
Place the loaf pan o a lined tray , pop a basil flower or a few leaves on the top, and bake in a hot oven on 200 for 20 minutes, no fan.
At the 20 minute mark, remove loaf from pan and let it bake for another 5 minutes – or until tapping the base gives the ‘hollow’ sound - on the still hot lined tray.