Knead something to dough

Knead something to dough

Just like a Shanghai poultry market I am currently on lock-down. My leg has improved enough that I am able to hobble around the house. With no-one home and a need to do something other than sit around researching eastern European criminal gangs on the internet for no good reason, I decided to make some bread from what was lying around.

Here is what I came up with, I will start with the basic dough recipe:

500g bread flour,
55g butter
45g olive oil
12g salt
12g sugar (fine grain)
7 g dried yeast

Now this was no professional bread I was intending to make and some of that recipe was driven by necessity, notably the butter and oil mix. I am fairly sure the butter in the fridge was ours but just in case I left some of it and substituted the rest of the weight for oil.

I basically mixed all these ingredients together with little care for getting salt in the yeast and all the other little worries that go into bread making. In my experience I can produce a good loaf without to much hassle just by mixing it all together at once. Once thoroughly mixed and the butter worked in I started to add warm water until it formed a wet dough that was just on the verge of workable.

In a frying pan I sauteed off half a red onion, half a leek and 6 cloves of garlic (this was after all a fridge raid, my legs are not up making it down and back from the 17 floor to the shop just yet). Once coloured, I squeezed off any moisture and added about 8 black olives, diced to mince. I cooked these off to take away the moisture.

I added all this to the dough and continued to knead until springy. i decided to keep the dough very wet, close but not quite as wet as a brioche dough. The reason for this is that I feel my doughs have been a little on the dry side recently so I fancied a change. Finally to this I grated Pecerino cheese and left to rise.

After the rise reached nearly double, I knocked it back, adding a little flour to help with structure. I formed a loaf, and then baked at 200 for ten minutes, dropping to 180 for some more time (about an hour actually, I lost track, just until it sounds hollow when banged on the underside) our oven is cheap so trust your own judgment.

disclaimer: I am fully aware that Pecerino cheese is not obviously hanging around in your fridge all the time unless you are incredibly middle class or your girlfriend is Italian. You could probably use cheddar, or maybe even that sketchy pot of ground Parmesan that has been knocking around at the back of your cupboard since the late 80s. At your own risk!

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