I tried making my first loaf of bread that wasn't entirely made from white flour.
As much as I love white bread, I'm eating it all the time so I felt the need for something that was a bit better for me.
I just used what I already know for making white bread and added some rye flour and wholemeal flours, then mixed in some mixed seeds.
I'd say the percentages of flour were roughly;
60% Strong White
A quarter of an English "tea mug" of olive oil
about 2 tea spoons of dried yeast
3 or 4 tea spoons of demerera sugar
3 quarters of a tea spoon of salt
and full fat milk -
I actually start the whole mix proportions off with the milk, it's why I never measure anything, I suppose some people talk about hydration of their bread, but my way of making the loaf is to put as little flour in as I can so the dough will let me knead it, no more no less - I'm trusting the dough to know best.
But if you imagine a normal kitchen measuring jug which would hold about a pint and a half, if you poured an inch or so of milk in the bottom, you'd have the amount of milk I use.
So, as always - I warmed the milk and oil (with a bit of sugar for good luck) in the pan on a medium heat until it was warm enough to feel it being warmer than my finger but not hot, poured the warm mixture on to the yeast and sugar in the bowl (the salt was in there too but on the other side to the yeast - again - a habit)
I use a whisk to mix the mixture to a lovely warm, yeasty. sweet smelling mix - and I know when it's going to work because it smells good. (believe it or not).
I mixed in some white flour until the mix was a bit thicker than batter, then covered it with a tea towel and let it sit beside the boiler until it was all bubbly - about an hour.
I then mixed in more white flour until it started to get thicker, which was when I then mixed in the rye flour - I noticed immediately that it made a more sticky and gloopy mix - I mixed in enough rye flour to make the mixture close to being kneadable - then I poured in some wholemeal and set about kneading it.
I, truth be known, chopped and changed between all 3 flours just depening on how I felt, when the dough stuck to my hands.
I kneaded for about 10 minutes, then let it sit again beside the boiler, covered with a tea towel - an hour later it had doubled in size.
I flattened the air out of it and kneaded in the mixed seeds (I think, pumpkin, hemp and flak? not sure) then I shaped in to a nice wee bowl shape, slightly tucking in the bottom as I turned it around and around on a horizontal axis in my hands, because I hear that folding of the underside - aids the rise.
I then placed my new experiment on some baking paper on the tray in which it would finally be put in to the oven (I've found it's important not to touch it when it's risen for the second time, so put the dough on the tray you'll end up baking it on).
I put the oven on about 220 ish but it's fan assisted so maybe that's hotter than other ovens? I don't know.
And just for the crack I gently rubbed some basil olive oil over it and put some more seeds on the top.
20 minutes later it was out - smelled lovely but didn't look like it had risen much, so I was a bit worried about it, immediately I noticed how soft the crust was and how it wasn't as firm as white bread, so I didn't give up hope.
I went to work from 4pm until midnight (you don't have to do that part hehe) thinking of my loaf all night - got home and tried it out, and it was lovely.
It was really lovely.
It's got a darker taste than normal, but the texture is very similar to what I normally do, the seeds taste lovely - and now to be honest I just want to make another one, but with sun dried tomatoes and onions and garlic - or I don't know - the possibilities are endless.
I promise to try to give out exact measurements in the future - I don't like cooking like that, but if anyone wanted to copy what I'd done (the beginners out there) I'd like to tell them how I did it.