Recipe For Yoghurt And Tahini Dressing

I have decided to start getting creative in the kitchen with salad dressing recipes. I made cucumber and feta salads during the summer months to go with what we were cooking on the barbecue. I would ordinarily serve this with my standard salad dressing which I always have in the fridge, and elevate the flavours with a bit of fresh mint, straight from the garden. However, in my attempt to change things up a bit with new salad dressings, I decided to make one using yoghurt and tahini. Tahini is another ingredient I always have in my pantry as I much prefer to make my own hummus than buy it. This salad dressing is quite versatile and it will work perfectly on some boiled potatoes as well.

Yoghurt And Tahini Salad Dressing Recipe For Yoghurt And Tahini Dressing

Yoghurt And Tahini Salad Dressing

Yoghurt And Tahini Salad Dressing Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 100mls yoghurt
  • 30mls tahini
  • 5mls ground cumin
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season

Method:

  • Mix together the yoghurt, tahini, cumin and lemon juice
  • Season to taste
http://tandysinclair.com/yoghurt-and-tahini-dressing/
 Recipe For Yoghurt And Tahini Dressing

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Stocking A Spice Drawer

There is no right way or wrong way to go about stocking a spice drawer! Each country has spices and herbs that are unique and so there are things in my drawer you might not need or use, and some things that you will also have. The trick is to start small and only buy what you will use. I dry a lot of my own herbs, especially tarragon which grows in abundance in my garden. I have 78 different herbs and spices but it has taken me a long time to collect them.

My Spice Drawer Stocking A Spice Drawer

My Spice Drawer

On my kitchen counter I keep a salt pig with medium flaked salt. This is for Dave who prefers to use this with his cooking. I prefer to use the flaked salt as a finishing salt, and the coarse salt in the grinder when I cook. I also have some wine salt, fine salt, and a pepper grinder close to hand.

Salt and pepper Stocking A Spice Drawer

Salt and pepper

I have a shelf above the stove and that holds the chilli flakes, herbs de Provence and the flowers of Scotland blend. The containers for the chillies and herbs come from France and are specifically designed for the herbs and act as a grinder.

A few extras Stocking A Spice Drawer

A few extras

I have a collection of spices for curry and they start with chipotle chillies, cassia bark, red chillies and 4 different curry blends of differing strengths as well as fenugreek seeds.

Curry spices Stocking A Spice Drawer

Curry spices

To make a curry you will also need green cardamom, cloves, star anise and cinnamon quills.

Spices For Curry Stocking A Spice Drawer

Spices For Curry

and for other dishes you need juniper berries, white cardamom, nutmeg and mace

Spices and Nutmeg Grater Stocking A Spice Drawer

Spices and Nutmeg Grater

I have a good selection of herbs! In my drawer you will find rosemary, mint, marjoram and thyme which I consider essential!

Essential Herbs Stocking A Spice Drawer

Essential Herbs

As well as dill, sage, tarragon and parsley

A Few More Herbs Stocking A Spice Drawer

A Few More Herbs

AS well as oregano, basil, mixed herbs and lemon myrtle.

A Few More Herbs1 Stocking A Spice Drawer

And Even More Herbs

Next to show you are the selection of peppers: white pepper, Sichuan pepper, black pepper, pink peppercorns and my newest addition of telicherry peppercorns.

Peppers Stocking A Spice Drawer

Peppers

and salts: truffle salt, smoked salt, black salt, Singapore salt and chilli salt flakes

Salts Stocking A Spice Drawer

Salts

You will also find allspice, ground nutmeg, ground cumin, ground coriander, mixed spice and pickling spice in my drawer.

More spices Stocking A Spice Drawer

More spices

Next we have a collection of seeds: celery, poppy, mustard, dill, fennel, coriander, cumin and nigella

Seeds Stocking A Spice Drawer

Seeds

And a collection of onion flakes, garlic flakes, oak smoked red pepper, Cajun spice, sumac and ground ginger

more in the collection Stocking A Spice Drawer

more in the collection

These are flavour and colour adding spices – cayenne pepper, turmeric, smoked paprika, curry powder, hot paprika, paprika

Flavour and colour Stocking A Spice Drawer

Flavour and colour

For baking I have vanilla powder, ground cinnamon, lavender petals and a vanilla bean

Baking Stocking A Spice Drawer

Baking

Last but not least I have lime leaves, dulse, bay leaves, curry leaves, wasabi and saffron

Leaves and more Stocking A Spice Drawer

Leaves and more

Everything in bold is what I would start out with if you are stocking a spice drawer for the first time. The rest of your drawer can grow organically as you make more and more dishes at home.

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Recipe For Egg Nest Ravioli

It feels like forever ago that I made my duck egg ravioli and at the time I was challenged to place an egg yolk into some pasta without any support. More recently I decided to make ravioli with a traditional spinach and ricotta filling. However, to make this a bit more interesting I decided to add an egg yolk to the centre of the ravioli as well. This is much easier than using an egg yolk alone, as you create a nest for the egg with the spinach and ricotta. The only time that you need to be gentle is when you cover the egg with a sheet of pasta to form the ravioli. The egg makes a great sauce for the pasta but I decided to make a burnt butter sauce to go with it just to make it slightly more decadent.

Egg Nest Ravioli Recipe For Egg Nest Ravioli

Egg Nest Ravioli

Egg Nest Ravioli

Ingredients:

    for the ravioli
  • 150g 00 flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • pinch of salt
  • 5mls water
  • for the filling
  • 200g baby spinach (cooked weight = 80g)
  • 100g ricotta
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 4 egg yolks

Method:

    for the ravioli
  • Mix together the flour, egg, egg yolk, salt and water until a dough forms
  • Wrap in cling film and rest in the fridge for 30 minutes
  • for the filling
  • Wash and pan fry the spinach until wilted
  • Set aside to cool
  • Squeeze out any excess moisture and chop finely
  • Mix in the ricotta and the nutmeg
  • Season generously and mix in thoroughly
  • Place into a piping bag and snip of the edge
  • Divide the pasta dough into 2 pieces
  • Laminate each piece with your pasta machine until the dough is silky
  • Roll out each piece until the thinnest setting on your machine (I go up to number 8)
  • Cover the one piece with a damp cloth until needed
  • Divide the dough into 4 squares
  • In the middle of each square pipe a circle of the spinach and ricotta mix, large enough to fit and egg yolk
  • You will have enough mixture to do a double layer
  • Now gently place an egg yolk into the circle and sprinkle with some salt
  • Cut 4 squares of pasta from the other piece and spray with water
  • Place each square gently over the filling and seal, making sure there are no air pockets
  • Cut into your desired shape
  • Cook in salted boiling water for 3 minutes

Cooks Notes:

We served this with a burnt basil butter which was made by placing fresh basil leaves and a generous amount of butter into a frying pan. It was heated until the butter turned brown and the basil leaves were crispy

http://tandysinclair.com/egg-nest-ravioli/
 Recipe For Egg Nest Ravioli

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Recipe For Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream

I cannot get enough of the barley malt syrup and decided that an ice cream would be next on my agenda. Greg who is the chef at Waterkloof has provided me with a lot of inspiration for ice cream flavours. He is a chef I respect and admire and he has given me his recipes to try out at home. Of the recipes he has shared with me, there are two ice cream recipes, and even though I have not made either one yet, I have used them as inspiration for my own ice cream. I decided to make a bitter chocolate malt ice cream as an accompaniment to something sweet that needs tempering. However, I have stalled a bit and not yet made the perfect dessert to go with my ice cream. I have a recipe on my fridge ready and waiting to go but I have not really been in the mood for baking. I think it is a bit of a mid winter slump, but that is sure to change before too long. In the meantime, I can keep on dipping my spoon into this ice cream and dream of summer!

Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream Recipe For Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream

Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream

Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream

Ingredients:

  • 250mls milk
  • 250mls cream
  • 80g cocoa powder
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 80g barley malt syrup

Method:

  • Place the milk, cream and cocoa powder into a sauce pan
  • Bring to blood temperature over a medium heat
  • Whisk the egg yolks and the barley malt syrup together until you reach a ribbon stage
  • Add a third of the milk to the eggs and whisk until combined
  • Return the mixture to your saucepan
  • Stir with a wooden spoon until a custard forms and remove from the heat
  • Cool overnight and then churn in an ice cream churner as per the manufacturer’s instructions
http://tandysinclair.com/bitter-chocolate-malt-ice-cream/
 Recipe For Bitter Chocolate Malt Ice Cream

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Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Situated in Lake Pleasant Living on the banks of the Groenvlei (Green Wetland) is a well hidden gem of a restaurant. Bistro on the Lake offers a menu covering traditional South African dishes and is open from 7am till late. This was our second visit to the restaurant and I am sure it will not be our last.

Bistro On The Lake Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Bistro On The Lake

The wine list is decent with a good, well priced selection of wines. There is only 1 single malt whisky on the menu and a fair priced cocktail menu. We had the Guardian Peak Shiraz 2013 (R155). The wine is light with a berry nose and a hint of spice.

The Dining Area Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

The Dining Area

The menu offers light meals, burgers, pizza and pastas as well as large main course portions which average out at R105 per head. Mark and I shared a garlic and feta cheese focaccia to start (R25) and it was covered with a generous amount of feta and a sprinkling of dried herbs. The base could have been crispier for my liking.

Garlic and Feta Cheese Focaccia Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Garlic and Feta Cheese Focaccia

I also had the soup of the day (R35) which was a fantastic home made tomato soup that had a lovely rich flavour. Both visits I have had some of my Mother-In-Law’s chicken livers and they are creamy and rich and the portion is generous to say the least. On our previous visit I had the creamy garden peas, spinach and feta penne (R65) as my main meal, and sent half of it home with my MIL for her dinner.

Tomato Soup Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Tomato Soup

On this visit I chose the roast chicken breast and mushroom taglietelle (R95) which was a mushroom pasta served with an entire chicken breast that was slightly dry. The sauce was creamy and tossed into well cooked pasta (as in not al dente). The biggest let down on this dish was the ‘plastic’ cheese that was served as a garnish. I cut my chicken up, tossed it into the pasta and managed to eat half of the bowl. The rest was sent home again with my MIL.

Chicken Livers Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Chicken Livers

Everyone enjoyed their meals and the boys ordered desserts. The brownies looked perfect and got the thumbs up from Mark. James’s crème brûlée did not get the same result as it was slightly thin, warm and the sugar top was too thick. I suspect that it was grilled rather than blow torched and when left to cool, the custard thickened a bit.

Chicken and Mushroom Taglietelle Bistro On The Lake, Sedgefield

Chicken and Mushroom Taglietelle

The service is good and the staff are extremely thoughtful, helping us rearrange the table for a chair we had brought with us to make Marguerite, who is 94, more comfortable. I would recommend that you sit outside and take in the wonderful view and enjoy the peace and quiet of being next to the lake.

Contact them on 044 349 2400

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In My Kitchen July 2014

There has not been much going on in my kitchen this month but at least there are a few things that I can share with all of you, and of course with the lovely Celia from Fig Jam And Lime Cordial who brings us all together each month.

I have a supplier who insists that my orders are over R1000 but they never seem to have stock of half the goods I need, and then they want me to collect! Last month, to get my order value up I added lavender vinegar to the list. I have not tried it yet, and will report back once I have done so.

lavender vinegar In My Kitchen July 2014

lavender vinegar

I also have some raw cacao nibs that I am going to use for choc chip cookies some time soon. In the meanwhile I added half a cup to my last batch of granola and that is so tasty I am tempted to blog a new recipe!

raw cacao nibs In My Kitchen July 2014

raw cacao nibs

Next I have some dulse flakes. These are one of the ingredients that should be in the recipe I have for coriander pesto, but until now I could not find them here at a reasonable price. Next time I make a batch of pesto I will add them in. I still have no clue what they taste like!

dulse flakes In My Kitchen July 2014

dulse flakes

My friend Alex who has blogged here has a feature in the Leisure Wheels Magazine which documented his visit to Triggerfish Brewery and includes a recipe for curry! Alex makes great curries so I shall have to try this one out soon.

Leisure Wheels Magazine In My Kitchen July 2014

Leisure Wheels Magazine

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Recipe For Panforte

One of the most beautiful cities we have visited is Siena when we were in Italy in 2010. Dave and I left Assisi and took a drive to Firenze (Florence). When we were on honeymoon, we missed out on two things in Florence and had driven back to walk around the Duomo and visit the Uffizzi Gallery. We then drove to Sienna where we stayed at the Hotel il Palio in the old city. We found a quaint restaurant just outside the old walls called Ristorante Imaestri where we had a very memorable meal. Panforte is said to have originated in Siena and the traditional recipe should contain 17 ingredients, which represent the number of Contrade within the city walls. My recipe is based on one I cut out of the Fair Lady magazine and does not contain that many ingredients. The recipe also called for rice paper and after making mine with rice paper, I cannot see the need for it. I have since checked up on traditional recipes, and they do not call for rice paper. It is only commercial panforte that uses rice paper. This panforte is rich and decadent and a small slim slice is all you need. Serve it with an espresso or dessert wine and you will be transported in taste sensation at least to Siena.

Panforte Recipe For Panforte

Panforte

Panforte

Adapted from Fair Lady Magazine February 2013 page 6

Ingredients:

  • 100g blanched hazelnuts
  • 100g blanched almonds
  • 100g raw pistachios
  • 100g dried cranberries
  • 150g self raising flour
  • 80g cocoa powder
  • 5mls baking powder
  • 5mls ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of fine salt
  • 200g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 150g sugar - I used fructose
  • 230g honey

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 100° Celsius
  • Place the nuts onto a baking tray and bake for an hour
  • Preheat the oven to 150° Celsius
  • Spray a spring form tin with non stick cooking spray and line the base with baking paper
  • Chop the nuts roughly, and add to a large mixing bowl together with the cranberries
  • Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, cinnamon and salt
  • Mix together to coat the nuts and cranberries with the flour, this will help prevent them from sinking
  • Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie
  • Place the sugar and honey in a saucepan and place on the stove on a medium to high heat
  • Stir continuously until the sugar has melted and bring to the boil
  • When the syrup has reached 112° Celsius pour the syrup into the chocolate and mix in
  • Then pour the liquid ingredients into your dry ingredients and working as quickly as possible, mix them together thoroughly
  • Pour the mixture into your tin and flatten down
  • Bake for 35 minutes and leave to cool in the tin
  • Remove from the tin and cut into wedges

Cooks Notes:

Traditionally panforte is dusted with icing sugar.

http://tandysinclair.com/panforte/
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Recipe For Dried Plum And Almond Rusks

Rusks are to South Africans what biscotti are to Italians. They are a hard, twice baked biscuit (cookie to my American readers), that is most often served with a hot drink such as tea, and used for dipping. In South Africa the most common source of commercial rusks is Ouma Rusks where ouma means grandmother in Afrikaans. They do amazing flavours, and I am sure many a South African child has teethed on them. Since discovering that I can make small batches of rusks with success, I have started making up flavour combinations to suit my mood, and what needs using up. I had some plums in the fridge which never seemed to ripen. When we got back from overseas I turned them into dried plums and then used these to make my dried plum and almond rusks. I hope that no matter where you are, you will try and make this traditional South African tea time treat.

What is the traditional biscuit / cookie from your country?

Dried Plum And Almond Rusks Recipe For Dried Plum And Almond Rusks

Dried Plum And Almond Rusks

Dried Plum And Almond Rusks

Makes: 18 rusks

Ingredients:

  • 275g self raising flour
  • 1.25mls baking powder
  • 2.5mls salt
  • 85g sugar - I used fructose
  • 65g dried plums
  • 65g almonds
  • 25g dessicated coconut
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 125g thick yoghurt
  • 125g butter, melted

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180° Celsius
  • Line a loaf tin with baking paper
  • Place the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix
  • Mix together the egg, yoghurt and butter
  • Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients
  • Mix until well combined
  • Pour the batter into the loaf tin
  • Bake for 45 minutes
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely on a wire rack
  • Preheat the oven to 40° Celsius
  • Cut into chunks and bake for 3 hours to dry out

Cooks Notes:

I made my own dried plums by baking quartered plums for 90 minutes at 100° Celsius

http://tandysinclair.com/dried-plum-and-almond-rusks/
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Reuben’s One & Only, Cape Town

Reuben’s at the One & Only would not have been on my list of places to visit due to our previous experience at Reuben’s in Franschhoek. We went to Franschhoek for lunch and did not want to place an order for starters as my parents had a plane to catch and we were time poor. We were told that we would have to wait for all the diners to have their starters before our main courses would be made! However, when Reuben invited Gregory Czarnecki (which was spelt incorrectly on the menu) from the restaurant at Waterkloof Wines to collaborate with him in a 4 course meal we decided to go and enjoy an evening out.

Reuben and Greg Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Reuben and Greg

When approaching the One & Only you would think it was a block of apartments and it is not well sign posted. However, once we found the entrance all was good. We were offered concierge parking but this is not necessary as there is an elevator up to the hotel from the underground parking, as well as golf carts with drivers if you are travelling with luggage. We made our way to the reception and walked down to Reuben’s so that we could be directed to the Vista Lounge. This has no signage either and was open to everyone, and not only people coming for the dinner. Our evening started with a wine tasting of 4 of the Waterkloof Wines. The lady handling the wine tasting was very well informed about the estate. However, she was alone trying to handle the tasting for all the diners, who all arrived at staggering times. We began with the Viognier 2012 which was not very cold. It is a floral light wine and by far our favourite of the whites the estate has. We then moved on to the Circle Of Life White 2011 which is buttery on the palate. Our next tasting was the 2014 Cape Coral. I love this wine but think it would have been better to have tasted the 2013 as this one had only just been bottled. It has a Turkish delight taste and was slightly acidic. We then poured ourselves the Circumstance Syrah 2010 and at this stage the canapés were brought around. The canapés were most welcome as we had been at gym and the hunger pangs were starting to develop. They were average, with a good flavour but sadly the staff did not know what they were bringing around. We were told the fish mouse was blue cheese! The wine is a beautiful drinking wine with a cigar box nose and berry tones on the palate. We chose to have a glass of this with our meal (R90 per glass / R430 per bottle). As you can see from the prices, the wines are pathetically expensive! The same wine at the restaurant at Waterkloof Wines sells for R195 a bottle. And this goes for the entire wine list which by the way does not include one Waterkloof wine. What I found interesting was that the excellent selection of single malt whisky prices were not outrageous.

Bread Basket Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Bread Basket

We all made our way to the dining room which looks like a banquet hall and the starter plate was put in front of us without the velouté. While waiting I ate one of the soft crusted bread rolls. After a short introduction by Aubrey from Dinner with Aubs (who told us to not eat the bits on our plate), Reuben explained that the theme for the evening was French Cape Malay. As both Reuben and Greg favour seasonal ingredients the menu only came together at the last minute due to supplier availability. Reuben said that Greg’s food is beautiful to look at and I totally agree with that statement. While Reuben and Greg were chatting the Jerusalem artichoke velouté was poured out of a large teapot over the nettle marshmallows, brioche and flowers. The warm velouté was poured into a cold dish and I mixed the ingredients together which melded the flavours. The nettle flavour was very distinct but it was the earthy Jerusalem artichoke which had the most lingering flavour. Dave did not blend his dish together which resulted in a completely different taste sensation.

Jerusalem Artichoke Velouté Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Jerusalem Artichoke Velouté

Without much delay, the intermediate course of Cape Malay pickled monkfish, koeksisters, lentil and a meebos salad was served. I thought that the koeksister was divine but Dave and some other diners did not agree with me. The pickled fish was perfect and the meebos quite sticky. The plates were lukewarm which was to be the case for the main course as well. The mains took a long time as we all had to wait for every plate to be cleared from the intermediate, and then every main course plated up before serving started. I think this was a mistake. They should have staggered the serving of each table from the starters to ensure everyone got hot food without too much delay.

Cape Malay Pickled Monkfish Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Cape Malay Pickled Monkfish

Reuben spoke some more while we waited for the roasted loin of venison (springbok), viennoise shank pie with juniper and all spice, beet relish, candied walnuts with bordelaise. As we eat quite often at Waterkloof we could immediately see which elements on the plate were Greg’s. The pastry on the pie was too thick and undercooked but the meat was hot. The roast beetroot was divine with a sharp relish and pickled beets to compliment it. The bordelaise was was thick and sticky. The entire dish was very tasty but I am not a fan of walnuts and so only ate one of them to try it.

Roasted Loin of Venison Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Roasted Loin of Venison

Before dessert was served the sommelier spoke about Waterkloof and their wines and asked Greg some questions. These wines are made in the European style working with the natural acidity. Dessert showcased classical flavours and had an intense fruit flavour. On the plate was a pliable citrus lemon curd, citrus confit, coco nib, crumb, grape fruit caramel, citrus segments. It included a warm beignet which was disappointing in both flavour and texture. The 70% Ecuador reminded me that I have two piping bags in my freezer waiting to be used and the passion fruit ice cream was my favourite part of the dish and something I have enjoyed from Greg before. Dave and I ended our meals with an espresso (R25) and a rooibos tea (R20) which was served in a beautiful Japanese tea pot. Greg came around to chat to the diners and we left before it got too late.

Citrus Dessert Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Citrus Dessert

The meal cost R345 per head without the wine and if you make a booking for one of the future collaborations you will be expected to pay the entire amount up front to secure your reservation. Upon reservation I was asked if we had any dietary requirements and I emailed back to say I was sucrose intolerant. This was confirmed telephonically the day before the dinner and appeared on the slip. However, no concession was made to this so I cannot see the point in asking. The service was function like and slow from the kitchen side. The wait staff were all well dressed, polite and pleasant during service.

Tea Pot Reubens One & Only, Cape Town

Tea Pot

Contact them on 021 431 4511

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Recipe For Whole Wheat Bread

There were a few things that I was not sure of when I started working with my sourdough and one of them was whether or not I could make bread using my bread maker. This proved to be a great success and I often make the dough for my rolls in the bread maker as well. Another thing I was not sure of was whether or not I could freeze my starter, Last October when we went overseas I placed Cordelia (my sourdough starter) into a honey jar and put her into the freezer. I left her there until December and I was most surprised at how well she survived the cold. I had kept some dried sourdough aside for ‘in case’, and just added a pinch of the flakes to her when I woke her up. This was such a relief as when we travel there is no one to feed my starter. Another issue was whether or not I could get a whole wheat recipe to work for the bread maker. After a lot of loaves, where I slowly increased the whole wheat flour ratio to the white flour ratio, I can happily say that this recipe is perfect. I might try add more whole wheat in future, but I know that this works and so for now, this is what I have been making each weekend.

Do you use a bread maker?

Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread Recipe For Whole Wheat Bread

Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread

Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread For The Bread Maker

Ingredients:

    for the starter
  • 125mls unfed sourdough starter
  • 60mls bread flour
  • 60mls water
  • for the bread
  • 250g water
  • 25g olive oil
  • 350g whole wheat flour
  • 10g fine salt
  • 150g bread flour
  • 10g yeast
  • 35g sunflower seeds
  • 35g pumpkin seeds

Method:

    for the starter
  • Place the starter, bread flour and water into the bread maker container and mix
  • Place the container into the bread maker and leave to ferment for 2 hours
  • for the bread
  • Add the water, oil, whole wheat flour, salt, bread flour and yeast to the starter in this order
  • Place the container into your bread maker and select the whole wheat bread setting
  • Select a 750g loaf size and the nuts addition if your bread maker has that feature
  • Add the nuts to the dispenser (or at the beeps)
  • Cool on a wire rack before slicing
http://tandysinclair.com/whole-wheat-bread/
 Recipe For Whole Wheat Bread

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