Making Bread the LAZY way


Flour to rolls in ten minutes - and one of the easiest tasks ever. What's more it costs a fraction of what it would to buy. 

How is it done? Well, I'll tell you. At least, this is how I do it:

Mix a level teaspoon of bicarb into 250g of wholemeal flour (if you don't have bicarb use self-raising flour), then make a well and pour in 200ml of cold water which includes a tablespoon of vinegar. Stir quickly to a sticky dough. Spoon out half at a time onto two plates (I usually split each half into three rolls). Shove one plate in the microwave for two minutes on full-power, then do the next plate while you lift the first loaf with a knife and put lower side up under the grill to dry-off and brown. Same with the second loaf - then turn each to brown the tops. And hey-presto there's your bread!

Quantities here are approximate and depend on things like how moist the flour is, how powerful the microwaves, etc.

The ingredients can be varied too, because when you think about it there's no real difference between bread and cake. They are like opposite ends of a sliding scale - bread one end, cake at the other. To make up the liquid, whisk an egg and add orange juice, say - and try white flour (which maybe needs slightly less liquid). But don't use strong flour - for one thing it's less digestible (loads of gluten), and for another it doesn't rise so well when making bread/cake this way - and plain flour is cheaper too. You can dissolve sugar or maple syrup in the liquid to sweeten it, and you can add raisins or whatever dried fruit you like - and unless you mix in some kind of fat, you can have sumptuous fat-free cake.

Because the bicarb reacts with the acid of vinegar or orange juice or milk even, which should ideally not happen before cooking, the liquid should be cold, certainly no warmer than ambient. I say it takes ten minutes, and it does, but letting it rest for another ten improves it. And if you rinse the bowl and plates straight away, they clean easily in cold water so there's no washing up - unless you've used fat. I miss the flavour of yeast, but that's a small matter - and I do sometimes buy a loaf for a change. But bought bread is loaded with salt which in my opinion spoils the real flavour of the bread.

I can also describe how to make cheese, and wine. See HERE for cheese. As for wine, I have a big ledger full of about 20-years of making it, containing every detail - including at least two people's opinions on tasting once the wine is finished - and then months and even years later when it's had a chance to mature.

I used to make five gallons at the time in those big square containers that loose sherry used to be sold from - and probably still is in pubs. I'd fit a fermentation lock into the top and tape it to the cardboard box in which the containers were held - they're pretty flimsy, those plastic containers. So if you're interested click here: glug!

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