Friday, 18 July 2014

dan lepard's easy white loaf and some jam.

 
Making bread and jam are two of my most favourite things to do.
There is immense satisfaction to be gained from slicing into a homemade loaf or lining up a row of jars filled with a lovely preserve,
so after listening to Dan Lepard's inspirational talk the other week at the small bread company I just had to have a go at making his easy white loaf.  Click here for the full recipe.
 
The loaf was a pleasure to make and, as Dan promised, resting the dough and lightly stretching it at intervals really did produce a silky smooth dough.
 
I was very pleased with the end result.

 
 
A loaf with a good chewy crust and nice open texture.
 





And so to the jam or to be more precise jelly.
This year the blackcurrants on the allotment were ahead of last year ( unsurprisingly, given the difference in temperature this spring compared with last year's ) and a couple of weeks ago I was able to pick a big bowlful of fruit.
Rather than the usual blackcurrant jam, I decided to make blackcurrant jelly.

 
 


A trawl through my various books and the internet did not reveal a recipe for blackcurrant jelly as such, so I used the guidelines from The River Cottage Handbook No. 2 : Preserves which suggested simmering the blackcurrants in 900ml water per kilo of fruit until soft.
The fruit then has to be strained overnight either in a jelly bag or a sieve lined with muslin placed over a bowl.
 Resist the urge to poke and prod the bag, tempting though it may be, or the resulting jelly will be cloudy.

 
Next day, measure the juice and to every 600ml add 450g sugar.
Heat gently to dissolve the sugar and then boil rapidly until setting point is reached.
 
The result was a gently quivering jelly with an intense blackcurrant flavour.
 
 
 
Just right for enjoying with some homemade bread!
 
 
 
 
 


11 comments:

  1. That bread is gorgeous! I must try that recipe. I have a confession to make, I much prefer jelly to jam. I am not a fan of 'seedy' things and jelly just looks so beautiful .... jewels in a jar. Beautiful photos, great post!

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    1. Thank you Debs :) I tend to agree about 'seedy' things and prefer the blackcurrant jelly to the jam I made last year.

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  2. Your bread and jelly look delicious. I've never tried making jelly rather than jam, but may well give it a go this year - did you find the flavour was better in the jelly?

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    1. Thank you. The jelly gives a lower yield compared with jam, but I think the flavour is much more intense.

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  3. That looks so delicious Ann. I went on a Richard Bertinet course last year and find it fascinating how different their styles are. I'm very keen to try this method.

    As for the black currants I was really hopeful when I saw some bushes on our new plot but they've come to nothing. So I'll be looking to plant some next year. Do you have a recommendation variety wise?

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  4. I have a Richard Bertinet book and DVD and as you say, their methods are very different. With Dan Lepard's recipe, I was amazed how smooth the dough became with very little intervention. The blackcurrant bush on our allotment is an unnamed variety but I understand the 'Ben' species are very good.

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  5. Bread and jam are two of my favourite things to make too, like you say, very satisfying when you get them right. It was thanks to Dan's River Cottage handbook on bread that I learnt to make a proper loaf a couple of years ago. I've never had a bad loaf of bread since, so I swear by his method.

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  6. Mmmm...That bread looks so inviting, and so does your lovely blackcurrant jelly. I've had a large crop of blackcurrants this year, and now I think I know exactly what I want to do with them.

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  7. Mmmm...That bread looks so inviting, and so does your lovely blackcurrant jelly. I've had a large crop of blackcurrants this year, and now I think I know exactly what I want to do with them.

    ReplyDelete