The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

What is cassis in Lepard's Cassis and Currant loaf?

Kroha's picture

What is cassis in Lepard's Cassis and Currant loaf?

Hello everyone,

So, the name of the loaf, from Dan Lepard's The Handmade Loaf book is Cassis and Currant loaf.  It asks for a soaker made of currants, water and cassis.  It says 250 g currants, 150 g water and 50 g cassis make 280 g currants when soaked and strained.   Then in the dough more cassis at room temperature is added, as well as "280 g soaked currants, drained".  Because of how the soaker is described (when drained, no cassis left, only currants, and the weight of the drained soaker is less than the total combined initial weight of cassis and currants), and because room temprature is specified for cassis in dough, I am assuming it is a liquid.  I considered Creme de Cassis, but it seems to be a weird ingredient for bread.  Dried black currants are a possibility, but then the soaker is not well described, and why would someone specify temperature for dried fruit? 

Has anyone made this bread?  Any ideas on what the "cassis" refers to?  Are there differences between British and American English that are confusing me?

I figured out (perhaps incorrectly) that currants in the recipe refer to dried Zante grapes.

Thank you for your insights.

Best wishes,


Ford's picture

I suspect that Dan Lepard is just shortening the name Crème de cassis, a liquor made from black currants.  Currants are not grapes.


plevee's picture

The cassis is indeed Creme de Cassis made with non-grape currants.

The currants are however grapes, of the Zante variety, as you surmised.

Isn't English wonderful!!

I haven't made this bread yet, but all Lepard's breads are worth a try.


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

That's got to be a colorful loaf!  I agree, currents would be the ones like raisins and cassis would be the drink. 

LindyD's picture

While he stops by TFL from time to time, he does have his own forum.

I took a quick look and saw that the cassis and currant loaf is discussed.

SydneyGirl's picture

Cassis are black currants, which have a stronger, more unusual flavour than the red currants0. In my family black currants were either turned into jam or into syrup (cordial) which would be topped up with still or sparkling water. I wonder whether the cassis mentioned in the book is cassis syrup (sirope de cassis) rather than creme de cassis, which is alcoholic. The syrup would make more sense, as lots of breads have a little sweetener, such as agave or molasses added. 

Yerffej's picture


As English is not your first language,  it has taken a bit longer for you to come to the fact that Britiain and the US are two countries separated by a common language!  Let us know how the bread turns out.


Kroha's picture

and found the thread (thanks, LindyD).  Yes, it seems that people use Creme de Cassis.  And in the sidebar to the recipe Mr. Lepard explains that currants are dried grapes...  Go figure.  Thank you everyone for helping me figure this out.  As soon as I find nut-free Creme de Cassis, I will make the loaf, hopefully soon, and will let you know how it turns out.  For now, I am working on other loaves from the book.  Yulika

qahtan's picture

if you want to make creme de cassis,







For each pound of blackcurrants:
8 fl oz red wine
8 fl oz brandy

Put the blackcurrants into a large bowl and mash them a little with the back of a wooden spoon. Pour on the red wine, cover the bowl with a clean cloth and allow the fruit to soak for two days.

Liquidise the fruit and wine in a blender, tip the whole mass into a clean filter/fine strainer and press the liquid through. Measure the juice which results, pour it into a large preserving pan and add sugar at the rate of 1 oz for each 2 fluid ounces of juice (10 oz sugar per UK pint).

Stir the syrup over a low heat to dissolve all the sugar. Simmer very gently for 2 hours, maintain a temperature of only 70-80C, till the syrup is slightly reduced.

Let the syrup cool, skim the surface of any foam and add the brandy.

Pour into clean bottles and leave for a month or so before broaching.

By that time a sediment will have formed, so best to carefully rebottle... qahtan