Bread may seem daunting to make, but it is actually quite simple. After a few hours of waiting and a little bit of effort, your hard work will be rewarded with fresh bread straight from the oven!
This bread is a healthy, whole wheat walnut bread with swirls of blue cheese inside. The nuttiness of the grains and nuts pair well with the tangy blue cheese, which can always be substituted for your favourite cheese.
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Step 1: The Ingredients
- 300 grams of all-purpose flour (2 1/2 cups)
- 200 grams of whole wheat flour (a little more than 2 cups), can also be replaced with an equal amount of all-purpose flour
- 300 mL of warm water (1 1/4 cups) , less if not using whole wheat flour
- 7 grams of salt (1 1/4 tsp)
- 7 grams (one packet, 2 1/4 teaspoons) of yeast
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) of unsalted butter
- 150 grams of walnuts (1 to 1 1/4 cup)
- 100 grams of blue cheese, (approximately 2/3 cup), I used Roquefort
- An accurate digital scale that measures in grams (or measuring cups)
- Food processor (or a knife and cutting board)
- A large mixing bowl
- Baking sheet lined with parchment
- Your hands!
Step 2: Prepare and Measure
Blitz the walnuts in a food processor (or chop finely using a knife) until it resembles coarse gravel. It is fine to have some bigger chunks.
Weigh out the flours in a large bowl. Add the salt to one side of the bowl, and the yeast to the other.
Add the walnuts.
Melt the butter.
Step 3: Make the Dough
Pour most of the water into the flour mixture. Add the melted butter. Using your hands, mix the ingredients together until it forms a ball.
If the dough seems dry, add a little more water. If it is too wet, add a little more all-purpose flour.
Knead the dough, repeatedly folding it in on itself, with your hands for about 7-10 minutes until it feels elastic and springy.
*Alternatively, you could make the dough in an electric stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, but working with your hands is always fun!
Step 4: Rising the Dough
Leave the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Let it rise for about 1 1/2 hours, or until it doubles in size.
It may take longer if the temperature is colder, or rise faster if it is warmer.
Step 5: Adding the Cheese
Crumble the cheese and set aside in a bowl.
Take your risen dough and deflate it gently.
Roll one piece of dough onto a clean work surface into an approximate 12 inch x 5 inch rectangle.
Spread the cheese onto the dough. It's fine if not all of it gets on; cheese tastes great on its own!
Roll up from the long side, and pinch the seam, so you end up with a dough log. Be sure to seal the cheese tightly in the dough so it doesn't leak during baking.
Step 6: Shaping
Curl the dough log into a spiral shape, tucking the end underneath.
Step 7: Proofing
Place the dough spiral onto a lined baking sheet and leave to proof for about one hour.
Again, the rising time depends on the temperature. Adjust if necessary.
Step 8: Baking
Near the end of the proofing, preheat your over to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (200 degrees Celsius).
Dust with a little flour and place in the preheated oven.
Bake for about 40-50 minutes, or it is a dark golden brown (more baking rather than less is better - no one likes being served raw dough!)
Step 9: Enjoy!
Leave to cool for at least 10-15 minutes before digging in.
Serve warm, with plenty of family and friends nearby.
Congratulations on your hard-earned reward!