So, next stop sandwich loaf. Most of my breads are whole wheat/grain of some description because I like a toothsome and wholesome loaf, but every now and then it’s nice to have a white sandwich style loaf for a bit of a change.
This is my first attempt at making anything vaguely resembling a sandwich loaf in the ‘no knead’ bread making style (which is the current trend in our household), and while the end result of this loaf was not as soft and delicate as other sandwich loaf recipes, it was impressive in it’s own way and was streets ahead in flavour. That’s the real advantage in the no knead method. Long fermentation times really develop flavour in the dough and give you a great tasting and almost natural sweetness in the finished loaf.
Regular sandwich loaf recipes usually call for the addition of ‘enrichments’ such as milk, sugar and/or oil, so I added organic soy milk and a bit of oil to this dough, to see if they would soften the crumb as they do for faster breads. I can’t say this loaf was anywhere near ‘soft and fluffy’, but it wasn’t tough by any stretch and the crumb was quite delicate.
I also took less photos of this loaf, and made a video of the stretching, tinning and baking and included the final shots, primarily to show you my shaping trick for this kind of tinned loaf. It’s not the greatest film making effort on the planet (that could be a huge understatement), but if you can be patient and you have 7 minutes to spare it could be helpful.
Here’s the recipe:
3 cups bread flour/organic white flour
1.5 tsp salt
0.25 tsp instant yeast
1.25 cups water (room temp/cool)
2 tablespoons organic soy milk
1 tbsp olive oil
Method: Mix dry ingredients together really well, then add in wet ingredients and combine with a spatula/spoon in a bowl large enough to hold the dough at two times it’s original size. Cover with a plate or tray (bread board, anything will do, except plastic wrap!) and let it sit at room temp for approximately 12 hours. Leave the dough fermenting until it is at least twice it’s size and bubbly on top, and anywhere up to 18 hours, however the longer you ferment it the more crumpety the internal texture will become once it’s baked. I personally like about 12 hours, we have a pretty warm climate which speeds things up too.
All of the steps from here are on my video, but for those who cannot stand dodgy ‘filmed with a phone’ instructional videos (I understand, I really do) then the written instructions are below. You can skip through the boring bits if you want to, the most important section to watch is in the first 4 minutes or so, when I’m shaping the bread (although I think I’m doing more talking than shaping).
So after 12 hours of initial fermentation, tip the dough out in one piece onto a floured board/table, then stretch it out into a flat rectangle before folding it into itself twice like a letter (in thirds). Then flatten the dough out again and roll up into a log shape, and place in a greased small loaf pan to proof. Depending on the ambient temperature this should take about one to one and a half hours.
In the mean time, put a large casserole dish with a lid into the oven to preheat as hot as you can (my oven goes to 250 degrees celcius), preferably one you can fit the loaf tin inside. If you don’t have one this size see if you can bake the bread inside a cake tin or other size tin that fits into your casserole. Finally, once the oven is preheated and the bread is spongy and risen to almost double it’s size, place the loaf tin inside the large casserole pot/pan and bake covered for 35 minutes. The bread should be baked and golden by this time, but if you like your crust well done leave it for a few more minutes with the lid off.
This bread is phenomenally good.