Baking Bread

There’s something about kneading dough to make bread that is very relaxing and calming not to mention an arm workout!

So it was with no surprise reading a recent mind food article  that it is also good for my mind.  I total agree with the notation of it being a sensory pleasure!

To that end like most weekends or days off. I can be found to try out a new recipe or learning about different ways to do things. I seem to be one of these people that excel at baking not so good at cooking!. I also like to learn, your never to old to learn new tricks or experiment…………… applies to all parts of life.

THIS WEEKENDS EXPERIENMENT – Baking Cottage Bread Rolls. I have recently been given a copy of Mary Berry’s – Cooks the Perfect (Step by Step) and I have never tried to make bread rolls before (A gap I need to fill quickly)


500g Strong White Flour

7g Dried Yeast

1 1/2 tsp Salt

45g Butter (room temperature in small pieces)

1 egg beaten

Poppy seeds for sprinkling

Combine the flour , yeast and salt in a bowel. Add the butter and rub it in with your fingertips. Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in 300ml of hand-warm water in a steady stream , while mixing together.

Turn dough out and knead for 8-10mins or until smooth and elastic. Put it into a large lightly oiled bowl and cover with cling film and leave to rise for about 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size.

Tip the doing out onto a work surface and knead 3 or 4 times. Cut the dough into 10 equal sized pieces. For each piece of doubt cut off one third with a sharpe knife then shape both the smaller and larger portions into balls. Put the larger balls on the lined baking sheets and sit the smaller balls on top wit the handled of a wooden spoon that has been floured push through the centre of each stacked roll. Cover with a tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size for 40-45mins.

Preheat over to 210C fan forced. Brush the rolls with the egg and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Bake for 5 mins , then reduce the temperature to 200C fan forced. Bake for a further 10 mins or until the rolls are golden and firm and sound hollow when tapped on the underside. Cool on a wire rack.


Now that we have the way your suppose to do it out of the way . The first part of the recipe went fine , you do get a arm workout as it took a good 10mins of old fashion kneading with your hands but it did give the dough a silky feel. (I like to do things the old fashioned way sometimes and also I don’t have a machine with a dough hook)

It did say 10 but I found that 8 was all that I could cut – it happens.

IMG_2012 2

Pushing the wooden spoon through the dough to secure the top to the bottom is a fun and easy job.

45mins was all it took for the rolls to get twice their size on the backing tray.


Rolls have risen!

Its at this point the mystery of the poppy seeds – now known as “poppy gate” started. I was sure there were poppy seeds in the pantry in fact had seen them the other day. Could I find them today at this point the frustration of 40mins pulling the pantry apart occurred ,the yelling to hubby were had he moved them to only conclude they are lost & get that quick apology in to the other half. I quickly found the seasme seeds to sub in on the rolls.

I got on to the happy task of brushing the rolls with egg , followed by the artistic spreading of the seeds all over the buns


Artistic spreading of seed on rolls.

And into the over they went , following instruction 5min then lower temp they were cooked within the next 10mins with a nice hollow sound , up onto the wire to cool



The final product – Thank you Mary! for a great recipe with easy to follow instructions.

The final product was consumed with ham , lashing of relish and a side of cheese – the enjoyment of eating homemade bread with you own hands almost but not quite topped the enjoyment of making them and learning and trying . Even if they had not turned out so well I would still have had funning making them.

Thanks Mary!









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