Friday, March 12, 2010

Rapid Light Wholemeal Loaf - Sara Lewis

There's nothing better in my opinion, than a well made sandwich, to satisfy one's hunger - be it for breakfast or as a snack or even for lunch. The bread should be fresh and the fillings juicy - that's all that one needs! I especially love the toasted sandwich - no, not the grilled sandwich - the one you toast on those metal sandwich toasters over the gas flame.

Having grown up in Mumbai, I simply love those fresh sandwiches the streetside vendors make - white bread (yeah, yeah I hear ya), a choice of plain butter or Amul butter, mint chutney and then the fillings - onions rings, slices of boiled potaotes and beet, raw tomatoes - a sprinkle of salt and pepper, quick cutting into 8 square towers you had to struggle to fit into your mouth - Heaven! We practically lived on Subhash's Rs.5 sandwiches when we were in college - it was so cheap and filling.

Some guys also had toasted sandwiches - while we used to make them regularly at home (probably the first thing I "cooked" in the kitchen) I had them outside only when I was doing my CA - the guy opposite Eros theatre in Churchgate was very good but I'm sure everyone has their favourite one.
I still love to have toasted sandwiches for breakfast - tomato, boiled potatoes or even eggs, coriander mint chutney, half a cheese slice - perfect start to the day. Haven't had a nice sandwich outside for a very long time - the apologies which pass for sandwiches in places like Coffee Day should be banned. Sitting in the display rack for ages, filled with some truly shocking stuff (once I got a sandwich with grated carrots and mayonnaise!) they are not worth half the money being charged.

Its been a long time since I baked bread - pizza base is what I have been experimenting with for some time. The cold temps till now also didn't help - now that the weather is turning, I thought it would be a good time to have a home made loaf of bread.

Picked a recipe from Sara Lewis's The Bread Book - it has half whole wheat and half white flour and I thought it would be a good halfway bread to have. It turned out well, even though I had to up the flour quantity since, by mistake, I poured all the water into the flour originally measured out. The bread had a nice crumb and was soft with a great crust - it was also soo easy to make. I definitely recommend this for someone who is trying to bake wholemeal bread for the first time.

Rapid Light Wholemeal Loaf - Adapted from Sara Lewis's The Bread Book

2 1/4 cups wholewheat flour
1 3/4 cups strong white flour
2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp active dried yeast
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup warm water

1. Heat the water till just hot and dissolve the sugar in it, wait for it to cool till just warm (shouldnt be cold or hot) and dissolve the yeast in it. Set aside for 10 minutes.
2. Mix the two flours, salt, oil - pour in the yeast mixture a little at a time and knead well for about 10 minutes till the dough comes together - smooth but not sticky.
3. Grease a loaf tin and put the dough into it. cover loosely with a lightly oiled cling film and leave in a warm place to rise - about an hour or till the dough reaches just above the top of the tin.
4. Slash with a sharp knife - the bread cooks well and looks good too.
5. Pre heat oven to 200c, remove the clingfilm and bake for 25-30 minutes - when tapped the loaf should sound hollow and the bread will be browned on top. The book recommends checking after 15 minutes and to cover with foil if it is overbrowning.
6. Loosen bread from the sides of the tin, transfer to wire rack and cool.

We had this for breakfast the next day - sauteed sausages, tomatoes, lettuce, vegetable patties, mint chutney, cheese, mustard - we mixed and matched. Whats your favourite way to have a sandwich?


nina said...

the bread looks great as do all the pictures...
baking bread can get addictive...

sangeeta said...

Hi Miri..
here is another whole wheat bread lover n i make it quite often , sometimes plain buns too ..
i agree about the sandwiches we get in fancy coffee houses , i have been always disappointed ...homemade ones are so much better .
i use annapurna whole wheat flour in India cuz we don't get any specific bread flour n it comes out well.

Cooking Foodie said...

Hey Miri, thanks for ur comment abt the cabbage. If u like it without haldi you will definitely like the next version I plan to post in the coming days...

sayantani said...

thats the first thing that I also prepared as a child. the loaf looks perfect Miri and for quite some time my hands been itching to make some but never got the yeasts right. perfect loaf and tempting sandwitch.

Cham said...

The loaf is fluffy and fibrous! I imagine the tower version of sandwich filled with veggie :)

Bong Mom said...

That is a perfect loaf, you are quiet the bread maker Miri

I love Mumbaiya sandwiches, Amul butter, cucumber and tomatoes, bliss.

Raaga said...

My favourite was the guy behind express towers at nariman point... god I wish I could order a sandwich from him now!

Miri said...

Raaga - I loved that place too - was always in Nariman Point for most of my clients

Raaga said...

My bread book is called The Bread Book... haven't checked who the author is... I bought it at a sale :)

Miri said...

Thats the one Raaga :) what a coincidence!

Anita said...

That's a darn good loaf I say! That is the silver lining of Delhi summers - the dough is quick to rise to the occasion!