Tom Herbert's Large Combine Harvester Loaf
A wonderfully tasty, seedy, oaty, spelt loaf. This loaf will take a little under three hours from an itching-to-bake start, through to the first hot butter slathered, nutty, seedy, blissful bite.
465g Organic Wholemeal Spelt Flour
50g Sunflower Seeds
5g Dried Yeast (1 tsp or 10g Fresh Yeast
50ml Rapeseed Oil
50g Jumbo Oats
300ml warm water
Set of scales
Large mixing bowl/mixer with dough hook*
Large loaf tin
Oven - 230 degrees C at baking time
Baking stone and plastic scraper*
Oven dish for steam
So when you have time, clear a space, gather all the ingredients and kit and commence the weighing.
Weigh out the flour, seeds, salt, and oil directly into the bowl. Wake the dried yeast in a little of the warm water, whisk with a fork in the bottom of the measuring jug until the lumps have gone, then offer the yeast into the mix. (If you have fresh yeast then even better, but weigh in double the stated amount.) Add the rest of the water into the bowl. Hold the oats back until the end, they break up easily and if they’re added in at the last minute they’ll give your loaf more interest and bite.
Right: get mixing. If you have a dough mixer, commingle the ingredients on slowest speed for 2 minutes, and save your kitchen a flour storm, then crank her up to half way and knead the heck out of it for 12 minutes, don’t let it dance off the worktop, add the oats and give it 1 minute on slow.
If you’re doing this by hand, mix the ingredients together in the large mixing bowl.
Okay, once the ingredients have come together, then tease it out of the bowl onto the work top and knead it like a baker for 15 minutes. Skimping on this bit will result in a too crumbly loaf. Add the oats at the end.
Now then. Put the dough into your bowl and cover it with the cling film; leave it to double in size, or for 1 hour, whichever is first.
Next, on the work top gently hand mould the dough piece to fit the tin. Dust the loaf with a little flour, dock the top with a fork, cover with the cling film and goad the loaf to rise a final time in a warm place, on top of the oven whilst its cranking up is good.
If you have a baking stone make sure it’s in there. When the crest of the loaf makes an appearance above the tin (could be an hour), it’s time to get the dish with a little boiling water into the oven to make some steam (before Barry ‘the walrus of love’ White gets a bun in the oven we know how he likes things... steamy... same thing).
Steaming? Yes, then GO! get her in and DO NOT DISTURB. After 10 minutes take the bowl of steam carefully out and get a sniff of that, see how it’s sprung. Ace.
Check the loaf after it’s had half an hour: if the bottom is golden and sounds hollow when tapped, then you’re done, perhaps it’ll need 5-10 minutes more, depends on your oven. Cool out of the tin. I just rest mine on top, then try a bit.
Easy! Lush and nutritious, ace toast.
For masses of baking inspiration and some sleeves rolled up, hands on experience come on one of my bread making courses. See the Hobbs House Bakery website for more details or find me on twitter.