The Great British Bake Off has finally returned to our screens, nursing our hearts after the end of the Olympics, and this week’s theme was bread (which has been my favourite week each year). A staple of our daily diet, I LOVE making bread. Many people I have spoken to agree that it is quite a therapeutic process, especially for stress management. I have not yet invested in a bread maker as I still enjoy spending a lazy Sunday making bread. However saying that, with the recent freak hot weekend, I really wanted to make some bread but did not want to spend the entire day stuck in a warm kitchen.One of my favourite chefs, Lorraine Pascale, has also appeared back on our screens with her new cooking show ‘Fast, Fresh and Easy Food’. I am not lucky enough to have her latest book, so I reverted to her last one ‘Home Cooking Made Easy’, and found a no yeast/no kneading recipe. You can have the loaf made and baked in just over an hour, and not too much arm work is involved – perfect to whip up when you feel like an instant yummy loaf! I adapted the flavours slightly to make a cheese, chilli and walnut loaf (whereas hers was cheese, chives and ham). Cheese and walnut are a great combination in bread or pastries, and the chilli just gives it a nice little kick.
425g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Sprinkle of black pepper
150g cheddar cheese (grated) plus a bit extra to decorate
1 tsp chilli flakes
75g chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 200C. Put all the ingredients apart from the water in a bowl and mix together well.Make a well in the middle and add the water. Use your (clean) hands to bring it all together in a soft but not sticky dough. If it is not coming together, add a bit more water; if it is too sticky, add a bit more flour. Turn the dough onto a board, shape into a ball and flatten slightly with your hand. Run 3 slits along the top with a sharp knife and sprinkle the extra bit of cheese on top.Transfer the loaf to a baking tray. Place a handful of ice cubes in a tray in the bottom of the oven to create some steam, then place the loaf in the oven. Bake for around 30 - 40 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown on top and smells cooked.You can either leave it to cool completely, or allow to cool down for a few minutes and enjoy straight away. I covered mine in butter and dunked it into a vegetable ratatouille – very tasty. My next meal with this loaf is going to be a cheese and bacon melt – enjoy
This is also my entry into Lottie’s Bake Off Challenge, hosted by Lottie’s World of Cakes and Bakes. She came up with the fantastic idea of getting bloggers to produce Great British Bake Off inspired bakes – I am really looking forward to seeing all of the entries at the end of the series! Visit Lottie’s website for more information or if you would like to enter!