Alot has been happening over the last few weeks, distracting me away from the blog. The biggest and most important thing being that I married my best friend, the Chief Taster, less than two weeks ago. And it really was a magical day, surpassing our expectations. Lots of great food, superb wine and let’s not forget the three tiered wedding cake – lemon drizzle on top, a traditional boozy fruit layer on the bottom and a chocolate and beetroot layer sandwiched in-between!
However to help banish the post wedding blues I’m now back in the kitchen under a new name, Helen Cross, doing what I love doing best – baking bread – and I’ve got a treat for you today. My rosemary and fig bread is the perfect pick me up, especially if it’s eaten while still warm. It goes well with a big bowl of piping hot soup or it is equally as good eaten on its own slathered in butter or honey or both.
225g strong white flour
225g wholemeal flour
1 teaspoon salt
15g of fresh yeast
290ml of lukewarm water
2 tbsp. fresh chopped rosemary
Flesh of two or three juicy figs chopped
The Baking Bit…
1. Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and make a well in the middle.
2. Mix the yeast with 1 tablespoon of water and add into the well with the rest of the water and mix into a soft dough using your hands.
3. Knead by hand for 10 minutes and place the dough into an oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and let it rest in a warm place until it has doubled in size. This usually takes an hour.
4. Heat the oven to 180 ◦ C.
5. Knock back the dough and knead both the chopped figs and rosemary into the dough for another 10 minutes. Shape your loaf, place on a baking tray and score lattice patterns on top.
6. Place back into an oiled bowl covered in clingfilm until it is one and a half times larger again.
7. Add a little milk and honey into a cup and using a pastry brush, brush the mixture over the top of the dough before baking for 30-40 minutes.