This is a simple recipe to make bread at home, you will need only a few ingredients to create something really amazing, that can be eaten throughout the day, from breakfast to dinner. Get creative by adding spices, herbs, or cheese to the dough or brushing on the outside before baking.
By Elisa Gennari
If you want to delight your tastebuds with something amazing, try one slice of this bread with extravirgin olive oil, a little salt and a hint of garlic, or with mozzarella and anchovies. Making bread at home, by hand, is a tough job, so I recommend to everyone who wants to enjoy regularly home made bread to invest in a kitchen machine, it’ll make everything easier and you won’t have a lot of work, it’ll do it for you!
Bread dough should always be hydrated when cooked at home, bakeries have ovens that cook at different temperature and so get different results, that’s also why I add oil to the recipe, this way the inside of the bread should be soft and moist. This bread keeps for several days in a paper bag or in a ziplock, you may also want to slice it and freeze it. You can also add olives, or pecans, or nuts to the dough.
- 400gr of high protein flour (you may substitute with whole wheat flour)
- 200gr of durum wheat (you may substitute it with high protein flour – or, if it’s not your first time you can use whole wheat flour, or other flours like oat, or spelt or rye)
- 15g of dried bread yeast
- 350gr of water room temperature (you may use lukewarm if you're in a very cold room)
- 1 tsp of salt
- 1 tsp of malt or maple syrup or honey
- 1 tsp olive oil
- In a big bowl dissolve the yeast with the water, add malt and 300gr of flour. Mix with a spoon, from the bottom to the top, to add as much air as you can. In a couple of minute you will get an elastic batter.
- Add durum wheat and and keep on mixing. When the dough becomes too hard to mix with the spoon, start kneading it with your hands in the bowl or on the countertop.
- Knead for other 10 minutes and then add the remaining flour, oil and salt. The last 100gr should be added a little at a time. If the dough is too soft, add some more flour, and if it’s too thick, stop when you have a smooth and elastic dough, that won’t stick to your hands. The dough should be as soft as your earlobe. Make a ball and cover with a plastic wrap or a wet cloth.
- Let it sit for at list 4/6 hours,or until it has at least doubled in size. This step is crucial, you don't have to rush and just wait, or the final result may be as though as a rock.
- When the dough is ready, knead it a little just to shape it into a loaf, and put it on a baking tray, covered with parchment paper or dusted with flour.
- Make some incision on the top and let it rest for at least 30 minutes. Put the tray in the pre heated oven, at 220°C for 15 minutes, then lower it to 180° and let it cook for 35/40 minutes. Let the loaf cool down on a wire rack.
- USING A STAND MIXER: first attach the hook. Follow all the step using the machine at a medium high speed. When the dough won't stick to the bowl anymore, turn off the machine and knead it for a couple of minutes on the countertop with your hands, using flour to avoid it from sticking.
Elisa Gennari was born and raised in Rome, with a true passion for home made food. Her goal is to share her ideas about eating delicious food while still staying healthy. In her blog she teaches her secrets on how to cook Italian recipes, always with a healthy twist.