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.

Sunday, 22 September 2013


(For those who aren't sure what the 5:2 diet is, there's a great deal of info on this thread.)

Calorie count:
Whole pizza - 910 cal
1/2 pizza - 455 cals
1/3 pizza - 303 cals
1/4 pizza - 228 cals

160g strong white flour (562cals)
1/4 tsp salt (optional)
100ml lukewarm water
1 teaspoon fresh yeast (15c) 

100g passata (22c)
80g Cheddar cheese, grated (311c)
Dried oregano

1. Measure the water and stir in the yeast until dissolved. Place the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and pour in the yeast liquid. 

2. 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 your fingers. Stir round in big circles, pulling the flour off the sides of the bowls into the middle. 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 flattening the dough out, folding it over, stretching it out and so on and so forth. Once the dough is smooth either leave it, covered with a dry tea towel, for an hour or so, or go straight to step 4.

4. Without knocking it back (that is; kneading a couple of times), form the dough into a round bap shape. Have plenty of flour to hand and scatter flour over the dough and worktop. With a rolling pin, roll it into a circle around  25cm (10”) across. Keep turning the dough around and refreshing the flour. The dough should slide on the flour. Place the dough on a prepared baking sheet.

5. Pour the tomato topping over the pizza and spread it out with the back of a spoon, leaving it 1 cm from the edge. Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the tomato, sprinkle with oregano, and leave to rise. On your worktop is fine.

6. When the dough at the edge of the pizza has become puffy, place in a hot oven, 220C, 425F or gas mark 7 for 15-20 minutes. When it is done the pizza will lift up all along one side when you check underneath, using a palette knife or similar. The bottom should be browning from the edges.


To get a crisp bottom to the pizzas, there are several things you can do:
• Make sure you keep the wet topping away from the edges – and don’t overload the pizza;
• Have a heavy metal tray at the bottom of the oven to use as a pizza stone. If you do this, have your pizzas on baking parchment on an up-turned tray – then you can just slide the pizzas into the oven.
• Finish them off in a large, dry, frying pan

For a further 13 calories, cover the cheese with 100g of sliced mushrooms.
Or: to use less cheese (and save calories without compromising flavour), place a few mushrooms directly onto the tomato and sprinkle the cheese between the mushrooms.
Spicy curry. Add curry powder into the base (add along with the salt) or add a modicum of Encona West Indian hot pepper sauce into the passata.

Cost - as at 20/9/13:

I made these with my Family Learning session on Friday morning.

The parents were surprised by how quick and easy it was to make the pizzas, but what really shocked them was the cost of the 10" pizza, made with 1 mug of flour, one fifth of a tube of tomato puree and 100g of cheese, which we costed at 67p!

Flour - 10p (assuming 1.5kg strong bread flour costs 80p as it currently does at Sainsbury's)
Tomato puree - 7p (assuming a tube costs 33p as it currently does at Lidl)
Cheese - 50p (assuming 500g grated cheese costs £2.47 as it currently does at Sainsbury's)

Total 67p

(No cost for the salt - miniscule - or the yeast, which can be obtained free from Asda. But add 3p for a 5g teaspoon of dried, active yeast, if that's what you use.)


  1. Paul My little arthritic hands are not very good at kneading, any suggestions as how to manage kneading. Should I use my bread machine on dough?

  2. Hi Amazing - thanks for stopping by!

    I've got osteo-arthritis in the knuckles of both hands, but it seems to be in remission, ATM. I put that down to acupuncture, which has helped enormously.

    You could make your dough in a machine - or you could employ the 'no-knead, overnight' method I explain in this post, here:

    Look for Method C - which removes the kneading part of breadmaking and takes much less of your time. You don't have to make loaves using this method, of course - you can make what you like!

    Best wishes, Paul