Morning all, it’s ALMOST Friday, which means I am off to Yorkshire for 5 nights without internet and barely any phone signal…not sure how I will cope but we will just have to wait and see! I won’t let this deter me from watching The Great British Bake Off on Tuesday but my bake will probably be later in the week again.
So, GBBO this week, wasn’t it brilliant! Bread can be a tricky thing to master and it is time consuming – a perfect way to judge the contestants on their skill set. Highlights for me were Becca’s wreath (although underdone) and Frances’ amazing sweet breadsticks. Next week we battle on with deserts – of which I think I will be trying to do 24 petit fours, something I’ve never done before!
In keeping with this week, I thought I would make some breadsticks for 2 reasons: a) I had never done it before, b) I’d already made English Muffins and fancied a pop at something else. If you do want to make some muffins, the link to my previous blog post is here. My mum bought me the book last week, so as I was flicking through, I saw the recipe for Paul Hollywood’s olive breadsticks; now I hate olives, seriously can’t stand them, so I decided that I had to have something else in them. My choice was “sunkissed” tomatoes which are in a garlic oil with rosemary (I’m not a fan of sundried tomatoes). They worked really well and the proving stage was amazing – despite only using half of the recipe due to the sheer quantity, it tripled in size with ease and tasted amazing. The only thing with mine was probably they were too thick (didn’t use a ruler), and were more like dough sticks that you find in pizza express and places like that. Served warm with a salad was how we enjoyed them and the recipe is something I will definitely use in the future.
- 500 g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
- 10 g salt
- 10 g yeast
- 400 ml tepid water
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 150 g sunkissed tomatoes, chopped (you can use sundried if you prefer)
- 2 tbsp rosemary, chopped
- Fine semolina, for dusting
- In a bowl, add the flour, salt and yeast; make sure the yeast and the salt are on the opposite sides of the bowl. Pour in 3/4 of the water and begin to mix using a wooden spoon (or your mixer on a medium speed if you have one, I’m jealous). As the dough comes together, add the remainder of the water and continue to mix.
- Mix for a further 5-8 minutes, the dough should be stretchy when pulled and slightly sticky. Add the olive oil and mix for a further 2 minutes until it has been incorporated; add the tomatoes and rosemary making sure they are evenly distributed in the dough.
- Grease a 2-3L square plastic container and add the dough to it; cover with clingfilm and allow to prove in a warm place until it has tripled in size (roughly an hour). When it begins to reach this time, set the oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas mark 7.
- Dust the worktop with flour and semolina and then carefully tip the dough from the container onto it. Don’t knock the air out of it, handle it gently to prevent deflating it. Dust the top of the dough with flour and gently stretch it out to a rough rectangle about 25 cm x 36 cm and 1 cm thick.
- At one long side, cut the dough using a large knife or pizza cut (much easier) and cut the dough inro approximately 18 strips. Place them well spaced apart on a baking tray lined with parchment (roughly 6 per tray).
- Bake in the oven for around 10-15 mins until golden then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling completely.
If you feel inspired to bake something related to bread and want some tips from others online, join us at Bakers Anonymous as we bake along with the contestants!