Prep 3 hrs
Cook 30 mins
A basic recipe for brown bread, from British chef Rosie Sykes.
- 1 (7 g) packet dried yeast
- 300 ml bitter beer
- 400 g brown flour (granery is best)
- 250 g strong white flour
- 30 g salt
- 50 g butter, softened and cut into cubes
- 100 g runny honey
- oil, for greasing
- 50 g sunflower seeds
- Sprinkle the yeast on to the beer, give it a whisk and leave in a warm place.
- Put the flour and salt in a bowl, then rub in the butter.
- Make a well in the centre, stir in the honey with a wooden spoon and slowly add the beer mix until it all comes together (if it's too dry, add a little warm water).
- Turn out on to a floured surface and knead for five minutes, until smooth and elastic.
- Rinse the bowl with hot water, then dry and lightly oil it.
- Shape the dough into a ball, pop in the bowl and cover with oiled clingfilm.
- Put in a warm place until doubled in size (up to two hours).
- The dough should feel light and full of air.
- Knock back the dough by tipping the sunflower seeds on top and kneading them in for a few minutes.
- Split the dough in half and shape each into a rounded mound.
- Place on a greased oven tray.
- Cover with greased clingfilm and leave for 40 minutes so the dough can rise again.
- Preheat the oven to 210C.
- When risen, dust with flour or brush with beaten egg, sprinkle with poppy and sesame seeds, and bake at the top of the oven for about 30 minutes.
- The loaves may need longer, but check after half an hour.
- When done, they'll have a good crust, feel light when you lift them and sound hollow when tapped on the base.
- Leave to cool on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before attempting to cut or eat.