I attended a bread making course some time ago - It was good. No - it was great. No, - it was awesome.
I would like to share some of the knowledge that was passed on to me during the course.
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Step 1: Making a Stilton and Wallnut Couronne
Stilton cheese is one of the delights of my area of the UK,
If you don't have Stilton then any strong cheese would do the perfect partner for wall nuts. about 75 gm Stilton and 50 gm chopped walnuts
and you will need some cream cheese Ricotta or Mascopone, about 75 gm
Step 2: Basic White Dough
Making the dough
500 gms strong white bread flour (it needs to be bread flour as this has more gluten in it)
5 gms sea salt
10 gms live yeast
30 ml olive oil
300 ml hand warm water
In a bowl add flour. Add salt to one side and crumble the yeast on the other (yeast and salt don't mix). Add oil and water.
Mix with hand until the dough forms try not to add more water unless your sure it's too dry. Then remove dough ball, - The dough now need kneading to develop the gluten in the flour. This is a mixture of stretching the dough and the action of the yeast on the flour.
Work the dough with your hands and fingers for 10 or 15 minuets stretching it until you can feel it is getting smooth and elastic. The surface will lose it's stickiness.
If you have a mixer with a dough hook you may want to use this and mix the dough for about 6 mins. This should give you a smooth elastic dough ready for the next part.
If you work by hand and your bothered by the dough sticking to the table top - Spread a tea spoon of olive oil on the table to stop it sticking - You may need to do this more than once.
Put in a plastic bag and leave on the side for 30 40 minutes or longer of you like. The dough should get bigger if the yeast is working.
1. Try not to add flour keep working - the dough will become smooth and elastic if you have followed the amounts.
2. If it is sticking to your hands wash them and put a little oil on them rather than use flour.
3. The dough should be soft.
Step 3: Make the Plait
After 30 or 40 mins - or when the dough has about doubled in size.
If you want to take longer that will be OK.
If you place the plastic bag in the fridge you can leave it over night. No real need to put the dough into a warm place - room temperature will do fine.
- Turn out the dough from the bag onto a floured surface.
In this case forget what the books say about beating (knocking) the dough back - Spread it out with your hands to form a rough rectangle - then roll until about 1/4inch 6 mm or so thick.
Mix together the Stilton and Cream cheese and the Walnuts . Spread the mixture over the whole surface of the dough place
Take the edge and roll the dough up to form a sausage like a Swiss roll with the cheese and wall nuts inside. Put the seam on the bottom.
With a knife make a cut down the length of the roll starting about 50 mm (2 inches) from the end.
Turn the cut faces up and starting at the joined end lift one side over the other - repeat to form a plaited strand but with only 2 strands - more of a twist really - Pull into a circle and press the ends together to seal.
Step 4: Bake
Transfer onto a baking sheet and cover with kitchen film or a tea towel and leave for about 30 mins to prove a second time.
Make sure there is a nice big hole in the middle or it will close up in the oven.
Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200 deg C / 390 F for 20 - 25 mins until golden brown
Cool before eating - the cheese will be boiling hot!
This is excellent as a starter you can provide an olive oil and balsamic vinegar dip or as an addition to a meal. It makes a great snack dish if your not watching the calories.
Also a great way to impress visitors.