I think we all have that favourite bread recipe, the one we always turn to and trust to come out perfect despite sometimes crazy alterations and fancy new add-ins. If not – please allow me to introduce you to my very own favourite bread recipe!
To me one the most important factors when turning to baking is that is has to be easy! I am not a huge fan of kneading or getting my hands sticky with dough, it is just not for me. So I really love the fact that you can easily bake a wonderful bun without ever having to get your hands into the dough. Another crucial points is that you should be able to throw a portion together with whatever you have on hands. The one thing I sometimes run short of is active yeast, but besides that, my pantry does always hold something that with a little magic can turn into a wonderful bun. Whether I have rye flakes, durum or spelt flour, sunflower seeds or flax – these buns always turns out perfect.
Now that we have the basic recipe, with plenty of room for variation, it is fun to see what happens when you add different flavour components to the bun. If you want to make a sweeter snack version of the bun I love to add dark chocolate, cardamom and some toasted nuts. You could also add some dried fruit and nuts instead, and get yourself a muesli bun. Or you can even go savoury and add some grated cheese, fresh or dry herbs and top with some of your favourite seeds. Again vary the flour according to your wishes. I prefer to use around 2/3 of whole flour to get a bun with a higher fiber content and a little extra of that earthy whole grain flavour. But you can just as easy switch and use more of the refined flour to get yourself a lighter bun.
The dough is veeery easy. You simply whip it up, preferable the night before, no kneading included! Place it in the fridge overnight – scoop up the dough onto a baking sheet and bake in the buns in the oven – voilá. Really damn easy and the best start of the day with freshly baked buns.
Basic buns + a chocolate nutty one
Makes 16-18 buns
700 ml water
5 g active yeast
2 tsp salt
2 Tsp sugar/honey
250 g refined flour
350 g whole flour
1 1/4 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup flax seeds
100 g dark chocolate
50 g roasted almonds/hazelnuts
1/4 tsp cardamome
1/2 tsp ground vanilla
Savoury dinner version
75 g grated parmesan
2-3 tbsp of chopped herbs, eg rosemary, thyme or sage.
The night before: Dissolve yeast in water, add salt, sugar, flax and oats. Add the whole grain flour and then the refined flour and stir until you have a thick sticky dough resembling thick porridge. Add a cloth and set in the fridge overnight.
In the morning: Remove the dough from the fridge. Preheat oven to 250ºC/ 500ºF. Line two baking sheets, grab a spoon and use it to scoop up the dough and place 7-8 buns on each sheet. Brush the buns with water or milk and sprinkle a little seeds on if you prefer. Bake the buns in the oven for 12-15 min until golden and crisp.