I have an electric bread maker that I seldom use, so when I told a few friends that I was going to go for a bread-making workshop, they asked why.  And the reason is because some part of me misses my mum’s baking. She does everything by hand, and with so much love.

Bread is essentially made up of only four ingredients:

  1. 500g organic flour
  2. One 7g sachet of yeast (the workshop used Allinson’s)
  3. 10g salt
  4. water

This was what I learned:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. The flour, salt and yeast have to be accurately measured, whilst we can be more flexible with the water.
  3. Make a well with the flour.
  4. Sprinkle salt round the crater.
  5. Make a paste with the yeast.
  6. Pour the paste into the crater.
  7. Mix with water, adding water slowly, as required.
  8. Knead for about 15 minutes. It’s got to be ‘bouncy’ when it’s kneaded enough (if you press gently on the dough with a finger, it should spring back nicely).
  9. Let it rise for 3 minutes: put the dough in a bowl and wrap the bowl with cling film.
  10. Slash the dough and put in the oven.
  11. After 10 minutes, spray the oven with water to create steam. Repeat after 20 minutes. This gives the bread its caramelised top.

This is the result: