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, 8 April 2010

Peshwari naan bread

I use two different methods to make this – one of my most popular breads. I originally made it as a quick bread, using self-raising flour and done in a frying pan (baked in an oven it is not as moist). Now I often do it using a yeast risen dough, baked in the oven and also in a frying pan – both are equally good. Any dried fruit will do, but apricots are my favourite - the dark, unsulphured ones, of course.

Yoghurt is fairly traditional in this recipe, but as I'm a vegan I don't use it. If you wanted to use some yoghurt as part of the liquid you may need to add a little more liquid - depending on how thick the yoghurt is.

Similarly, almonds are often used in this recipe - but I'm not a fan.

Once again, this is a recipe that anyone can play around with - just use the ingredients that suit you.

Quick bread recipe

200g self-raising flour (or you can use plain flour with 2 tsps of baking powder mixed in – self raising flour’s just easier)
1 or 2 tsps curry powder
1 dsp sugar
50g grated creamed coconut
100g dried apricots, quartered
Medium onion, finely chopped
125ml water
Splash of olive oil (optional)l

The secret of any quick bread is to have everything ready beforehand and work quickly. So oil a large frying pan and put it on a low heat. Mix dried ingredients and measure liquids. When everything is ready, add the water and oil and stir it quickly into a dough. Be ready to add more water or flour if needed. Take it out, shape it into a flattened ball and, after flouring your worktop, roll out into a circle the size of your frying pan. Place it in the frying pan and increase the heat to medium.
They should take about 4-5 minutes each side to bake.

Yeast bread recipe

200g strong white flour
1 or 2 tsps curry powder
1 dsp sugar
50g creamed coconut (grated)
100g dried apricots, quartered
Medium onion, finely chopped
1 dsp fresh yeast
125ml lukewarm water
Splash of olive oil (optional)

Place dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pour the lukewarm water over the yeast and stir to dissolve. Add the olive oil. Mix into a dough, adding more water if needed. Knead for about a minute or so to distribute the ingredients properly.
Using the frying pan, follow the instructions as above.
Oven baked, roll out to a size that will fit your baking sheet, place on the lined baking sheet and leave until the dough becomes puffy.

Bake at 200c/425F or gas 7 for approximately 12 minutes. Check for some colour underneath to see if it is cooked properly.