No bread is an island

...entire of itself. (With apologies to John Donne!)
I live and breathe breadmaking. I’m an evangelist who would like everyone to make his or her own bread. I want to demystify breadmaking and show it as the easy everyday craft that it is. To this end I endeavour to make my recipes as simple and as foolproof as I possibly can.

I call my blog 'No bread is an island' because every bread is connected to another bread. So a spicy fruit bun with a cross on top is a hot cross bun. This fruit dough will also make a fruit loaf - or Chelsea buns or a Swedish tea ring...
I'm also a vegan, so I have lots of vegan recipes on here - and I'm adding more all the time.

Thursday, 31 May 2012


Simmered for 2 minutes on each side
Not enough room to simmer them all, so these were baked. Does this make them pirozhki?
The crumb of one of the pierogi. Need to make the dough thinner next time.
200g (1 mug) strong white flour
¼ tsp salt
125ml (1/3rd mug) lukewarm liquid including 1 tsp fresh yeast
2 tbs olive oil

Filling of mince (I use a meat-free mince), cabbage and onion. Flavoured with stock cube and a little curry powder

1.     Place the yeast in a measuring jug (or a mug) then measure up to 125ml (1/3rd mug) with lukewarm water and stir to dissolve.

2.     Whilst the yeast is working, place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. When the yeast is ready, add to the mix and then pour the olive oil into the liquid in the bowl. Have a little water to hand to add if necessary, remember, it is better for your dough to be wetter (slack) rather than drier (tight). Begin to mix by stirring the ingredients together with a knife, cutting through the dough. When it gets too stiff for the knife, use your hand to squeeze the mixture together. As it forms into a solid mass, keep turning it over and pressing it down to pick up the flour at the bottom of the bowl – but make sure it stays soft. Don’t be afraid to add more water to keep it soft! When all the flour has been mixed in, wipe the bowl around with the dough, turn it out onto the worktop and begin to knead.

3.     Knead by stretching the dough out, folding it over, stretching it out and so on and so forth. Do this until it is smooth – or until you get fed up!

4.     Leave to prove for about an hour on your worktop, covered with a dry tea towel. Or place in an oiled plastic bag until you are ready for step 5.

5.     When you are ready to proceed, place the dough on to the worktop and divide into 8, 10, or 12 pieces, depending on how big you want your pirozhkis to be.

6.     Drain the filling to remove any liquid.

7.     Flatten out each piece of dough, place a spoonful of filling in the middle of it and make a small parcel by bring up the sides of dough to meet in the middle. Press the tines of a fork into the edges of each pierogi, to both stick the edges together and provide some decoration. Place them on a baking sheet, lined with baking parchment.

8.     Continue with the rest of the dough and the filling, cover with a dry teatowel and leave to prove until they have risen appreciably.

9.  Simmer for two minutes on each side and place on a cooling rack. Or:

9.     Bake at 220C, 425F or gas mark 7 for around 10 minutes. The pirozhkis are done when they are browned underneath.

Pierogis are often fried - a couple of minutes each side - and served with fried onions

For a spicy version, include a chopped chili in the filling.

Mashed potato, cheese and onion filling

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