FROM GLOBAL BAKER, Dean Brettschneider, comes this mouth-watering collection of more than 60 bread recipes, plus detailed step-by-step instructions on artisan bread-making techniques.
SPINACH, PUMPKIN, CUMIN & FETA DAMPER
This is an old favourite of mine but with a new twist – toasted cumin seeds – to create a damper packed full of flavour. You can bake damper in a barbecue: just raise the baking tray a few centimetres above the grill so the damper doesn’t burn on the bottom.
Makes 3 damper loaves
- 500g strong bread flour
- 5g salt
- 40g baking powder
- 65g unsalted butter, softened
- Good pinch of freshly ground black pepper
- 10g cumin seeds, lightly toasted
- 350ml whole milk, tepid
- 120g feta, roughly cubed
- 100g spinach, washed, dried and roughly chopped
- 100g firm cooked pumpkin, cubed
Sift flour, salt, and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Add butter and, using your fingertips, rub butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Toss black pepper and cumin seeds through. Make a large well in the mixture and slowly add the milk into the well. Gently combine ingredients by hand, taking care not to over-mix.
Once dough is almost fully combined, but still has some wet and floury patches throughout, add the feta, spinach and pumpkin. Fold and lift into the dough to give a rough dough mass. Do not over-mix dough at this stage as it would result in a tough damper.
Tip dough out onto work surface and divide into three equal parts. Very lightly mould each piece into a round shape and place smooth side up on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Gently flatten each dough piece to a 15cm-diameter circle, using the palm of your hand. Lightly dust with flour, then leave to rest in a cool place for 15 minutes.
Using a large knife or dough scraper, score each dough piece into quarters, cutting three-quarters of the way through the dough. Bake in a preheated 220–230ºC oven for 18–25 minutes, depending on size. Do not over-bake as this will result in a dry damper. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
CRANBERRY & ORANGE TWISTED LOAF
Makes 2 small twists
- 200g dried cranberries, roughly chopped
- Juice of 3 oranges (150ml) (or good-quality store-bought orange juice) – zest 2 oranges first and reserve zest for dough
- 1½ tsp cornflour, mixed to a slurry with 1 tbsp water
- 400g plain flour
- 20g caster sugar
- Good pinch of salt
- 25g baking powder
- zest of 2 oranges
- 70g butter, softened
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 200ml milk
- 1 egg whisked with 1 tbsp water, for egg wash
- Additional flour for dusting
- Vanilla White Icing (see below)
Prepare filling a day in advance. Place cranberries and juice in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low, add the cornflour slurry and cook for 3–4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick. The cranberries should soften and swell during cooking. Allow mixture to cool. Tip mixture out onto a chopping board and chop with a large chef’s knife to give a thick, spreadable paste. Set aside.
The next day, sift flour, sugar, salt and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Stir in orange zest. Add softened butter and rub in using your fingertips and thumbs until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Whisk egg, vanilla and milk together in a bowl and pour into dry ingredients. Using a wooden spoon, mix together to form a soft dough.
Tip dough onto a floured work surface and knead for 10–20 seconds. Take care not to over-knead or the dough will become too elastic. Cut dough into two equal pieces and shape into squares. Using a rolling pin on a floured work surface, roll out each dough piece to a 25cm square.
Divide filling in half. Using a palette knife, spread filling evenly on each dough sheet, leaving about 1cm free along one edge. Brush egg wash along that edge. Working towards the edge painted with egg wash, firmly and tightly roll up each dough sheet to achieve a Swiss roll or log shape. Using a large chef’s knife or dough scraper, make a single cut lengthways right through the middle of each log. For each log, take one strand in each hand, with the cut side of each strand facing upwards. Beginning at one end, twist strands around each other down the length of the strands. Press the ends firmly together so they do not unwind during baking.
Place twists on a baking tray lined with baking paper, keeping them well apart so they don’t join together during baking. Brush with egg wash and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
Bake twists in a preheated 210ºC oven for 25–30 minutes. Turn tray halfway through baking time to ensure an even colour. While loaves are baking, make icing. Cover and set aside.
Remove twists from oven and leave to cool slightly. While they are still warm, gently heat icing in a microwave and use a pastry brush to brush it over the twists. Leave to cool completely before eating.
VANILLA WHITE ICING
- 25g butter
- 45g cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract with seeds
- 150g icing sugar
Place all ingredients in a saucepan and gently melt together over a low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon or spatula. Use while warm.
Reproduced with permission from Bread by Dean Brettschneider. Published by Penguin Group (NZ). RRP $45.00. Copyright © Dean Brettschneider, 2014. Copyright photography © Aaron McLean, 2014. Available nationwide