No. 47: Monkey Bread – 13.6.12
Making your own bread, in the long run, is cheaper than buying a regular loaf. Seeing as I’m trying to save a bit of money I thought I would make some as I have tones of Strong Bread Flour left from making a Cheese and Onion ‘share and tear’ honeycomb of buns a while back! However I didn’t want to make an ordinary loaf because that would be kinda boring! Don’t get me wrong, I love a nice old fashioned loaf but I wanted to give something new a try, a loaf with a twist! This is a loaf made up of lots of little dough balls stacked in a loaf tin to form a loaf of bread :) This recipe was taken from “The Great British Bake Off – How to Bake”
Makes 1 Large Loaf
500g Strong White Bread Flour
1 ½ tsp Sea salt flakes, crushed
1 x 7g sachet of fast action dried yeast or 15g of fresh yeast
50g unsalted butter, melted
200ml lukewarm Milk
1 large free range egg at room temp
100g unsalted butter, melted for coating
For Sweet Bread
75g Light Muscovado sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
100g Pecan or Walnut pieces chopped into small pieces
For Savoury Bread
150g Mature Red Leicester cheese, grated
¼ – ½ tsp dried red chilli flakes
Firstly, combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl, if using dried yeast, mix that in with the flour and make a well in the centre . Mix the 50g of melted butter with the milk and egg and pour into the well. If you’re using fresh yeast mix that into the wet ingredients then add to the dry.
Using your hand or an electric mixer with a dough hook attachment, mix the flour into the liquid to make a smooth soft dough. If the mixture is too dry, add a tablespoon at a time of milk, or if it is too wet, do the same with flour.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for ten minutes or 4 if using an electric mixer. Place back into the large mixing bowl, cover and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 Hour or until doubled in size.
Punch down the dough, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 60 small balls. They don’t have to be the perfectly round or perfectly the same size.
Put the 100g of butter in a small bowl, if making sweet bread combine the sugar, cinnamon and nuts in another bowl, if making savoury bread combine the chilli flakes and cheese in a small bowl. One at a time dip the dough balls into the butter first and then into the sugar or cheese mix and stack them in a buttered loaf tin. They don’t have to be arranged neatly!
Cover with a large plastic bag and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour. Towards the end of rising, preheat the oven to 200oC.
Uncover the tin and bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown. Run a rounded blade around the inside of the tin to loosen the loaf then carefully turn it out onto a wire rack and leave it too cool.
So everything had gone completely fine. All the dough balls were about the same size, layered them in the loaf tin and made sure I gave it a sprinkle of cheese at the end to top off my creation. I waited for it to come out of the oven, staring at in through the dark oven door, watching it harden and become golden. It looked gorgeous when removed from the oven but taking it out of the tin proved a little harder than I thought. I ran the knife around and turned it upside down to slowly release it from the tin. Then it happened. The dough balls had not successfully stuck together and half of them tumbled across my kitchen counter. The loaf split in half and finally dropped out onto my cutting board. It tasted nice, looked a bit of a mess but who cares! Better luck next time ^.^