Tuesday, 20 March 2012

The easiest bread in the world... Ever!

Ok, ok so I may have 'borrowed' this recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and tinkered with it a bit, but it's just too good not to share. Throw away your bread machines, people (well, stick them on eBay at least)! You don't need them any more.

3 cups Strong White Flour
1.5 cups Tepid Water
1 tbsp Dried Yeast
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder

In the bread tin you'll actually be baking the bread, add the water, yeast and salt. Sift the flour and baking powder together and add to the yeasty water. Mix together so there's no big lumps of flour left, loosely cover with cling film and leave in a warm place for two hours, no kneading necessary. When the two hours are up, dust with a little flour or cornmeal (or not, it's entirely optional) and bung it in the oven at 200°C for 30-40 minutes. Once it's done, leave it to cool a little and try your damnedest not to eat it all in one go.

N.B. It's important to note here that the measurements I've provided have to be exact. Use the flat edge of a knife to scrape off any excess. Also, don't worry about the dough being much looser than other recipes you've tried, it's perfectly normal.

Making a wholewheat version of this bread is just as simple, but in order for it to work, you need to boost the amount of protein in the flour. So, if you prefer wholewheat to white bread, just follow the method above and use these ingredients instead.

Wholewheat Ingredients:

2.5 cups Wholewheat Flour
0.5 cups Cornmeal (or Vital Wheat Gluten if you're lucky enough to have any lurking in your cupboards)
1.5 cups Tepid Water
1 tbsp Dried Yeast
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder

The best thing about this recipe is you can make can quadruple the recipe and make enough dough for four loaves, just keep the dough in a huge Tupperware container in the fridge. If you do it this way the bread gets better with each loaf because it develops a sourdough taste. Then, when you've used the last of the dough, don't clean the container out, just make up your next batch to keep the flavour that's been building up with each day. I'll upload pics when I have a digital camera to hand (my mobile phone is currently in pieces).  If you make any alterations to the recipe, I'd love to know about the final result. Go on, give it a try, you know you want to. xxx

Two years on...

A lot has changed since my last attempt at blogging. I'm no longer a student and I no longer live in Manchester. However, the fundamental reasons behind starting this blog in the first place haven't changed. I'm still vegan (10 years now) and I'm still flat broke. Also, my views surrounding veganism on a budget haven't changed either and, after two years of living in a remote village on the north coast of Scotland, my appreciation of cheap, home-cooked, vegan food is stronger than ever (believe me, almost nothing is vegan and, if you are lucky enough to find something, it's certainly not cheap). There is an amazing wholefoods retailer in Inverness (Highland Wholefoods) that sells vegan goodies in abundance, however it is roughly 110 miles from where I lived and it's pretty pricey.

Since moving to Glasgow a few months ago, finding vegan ingredients is much easier, but there's still that teensy issue of having no money to throw around, so for the most part it's a case of making what I can at home for a fraction of the price in the shops. There's also the minor trauma that is appeasing my meat-eating other half's diet, but I'll come back to that in later posts.

Before I stupidly erased all the posts on my blog, I had compiled a list of essentials for the kitchen, covering store cupboard and kitchen equipment. I'm going to rewrite that list and extend it to include the best sources I've found for keeping yourself stocked up on bits and bobs.

Until my next post... xxx

The Skint Vegan is back!

My last attempt at maintaining a blog kind of fell apart, but I'm back, I'm still vegan and I'm as skint as ever. There will be recipes and photos coming soon. *mwah*