Friday, February 7, 2014

Baking British Breads... ..

Happy Weekend everyone.. 
Hope you all doing well. 

We have a bit of snow here once again.. 
It is truly beautiful on a nice sunny day.. 

We took a day this week and went across the border into the U. S. 
For the first time ever they took us inside and told us to leave purse, cell phone and everything in the car while they searched it.. 
We had nothing to hide so I was not nervous but I wondered what they were looking for.. 
I told them we had cabin fever.. smile.. 
They were amazed that we would drive so far just to shop for a few hours, I guess.. 
We had a lovely day, though.. 

On the drive down we drank coffee and ate sandwiches we had brought and I read a book written about a family in the UK during the war years.. 

I love reading how that little country made do during those terrible years.. 
They were way ahead of their time as far as recycle, reuse and reduce goes.. 
We think that this is a new concept but as far as I am concerned it has been a basic for a lot of people for many years..

Anyway.. back to the story.. 
It was very interesting and the father was a baker.. 
The writer described the breads he made.. 
He would make a huge batch and shape it into cottage loaves, bloomers and coburgs..
It inspired me to try making the loaves today.. 

I looked it all up on Google and found these links.. 
Coburg bread....HERE
Cottage loaf  .....HERE

These were among many links but I found that for the most the  recipes were almost the same.. 
So I picked this one.. 

500 grams (4 1/2 cups) strong flour.. 
I used white unbleached.. 
2 tsp. salt 
1 tsp. sugar 
2 tsp. instant yeast
325 ml. (1 1/3 cups) tepid water.. 
I doubled this recipe so I could make 2 kinds of bread.. 

Stir the sugar into the warm water. 
Add yeast and let prove for 10 minutes.. 
Add the flour 2 cups at a time along with the salt and stir well.. 
Turn out onto a pastry board which is lightly floured.. 
Knead for 10 - 15 minutes.. 
Cover with greased saran wrap and place in a warm spot.. 
I used my oven.. 
Let rise until doubled which is a couple of hours.. 

So since I doubled  the recipe I separated the dough into 2 parts..

For the Cottage Loaf I divided it into 2/3 and 1/3.. 
Make the bigger amount into a roll and then add the smaller amount onto the top.. 
With a floured wood spoon handle I pushed it through the top loaf into the bottom . 
Sprinkle some flour over the loaf.. 

For the Bloomer Loaf  flatten the bread into a rectangle .. 
Pull each side over towards the middle and then fold over once more.. 
Put the seam side down and make several cuts onto the top.. 
Place each loaf onto a parchment lined cookie tray and let rise until doubled... About another hour.. 
On the Bloomer Loaf brush on water with a pastry brush on the top and in the slits.. 
Sprinkle on sesame seeds or poppy seeds.. 
Heat oven to 400 degrees F.  and place a heavy baking pan on the bottom shelf.. 
Let the pan heat for 20 minutes and then add a quart of cold water to the pan and place the bread on the rack above.. 
The water will steam and this helps make a nice crust.. 
Bake for 35 minutes.. 

Perhaps you would just want to make one loaf then don't double the recipe.. 

The breads turned out wonderfully and light.. 
Terry loved them, too.. 

I wonder what the British baker would think of them.. smile.. 

I love gleaning inspiration from books that I read and I have this wonderful  affinity for anything British.. 
I don't why because I am mostly of Scot descent with a bit of Irish and German.. 
We are a mixed bunch here in North America as you know.. 

Thank you so much for your time and I so love your little notes that you leave me.. 
I want to welcome the new followers.. 
So glad to have you join the blog.. 

Tomorrow we are having some family over and planning on cooking up a bunch of calamari ... 
The bread will go lovely with it along with a big salad and of course the rice has been requested again.. smile.. 

Let me know if you try making the bread and how you make out... 

Take care, dear hearts and God bless.. 


  1. Thanks for all the links and recipes. Love the bread photos! Yes, people use to make do more then than they do now.

  2. The bread looks so good, Faye. I love the look and smell of freshly made bread even though I don't make it myself. I remember the first time I went into my new friend's house after school and her mother had made white bread. Oh, it smelled wonderful. My mother didn't ever bake bread and I never learned or had the desire to. Pretty sad eh? Enjoy the weekend. I think it will be snow free for a change. :)

  3. Good evening Faye
    My mum used to make those breads her being a Brit , it has been years since I have had them they look YUMMY ! I wish I had been more into baking back then and payed attention to what and how mum did it . I love the smell and taste of fresh home made bread . Lovely photos . Still snowing and blowing here on and off . Thanks for sharing . Have a good weekend !

  4. The dough looks so beautiful in the bowl, Faye, as do the liaves. With a bowl of your soup, yum yum yum! We had 10 inches of snow here Monday! xo

  5. Faye: I think it's awful they took you in at the border, I know how intimidating it can be. We own a home and live in the States, but my husband is Canadian and still owns a family home in Fredricton, we've gotten to the point we don't even like to cross the border anymore. On the bright side your bread looks awesome.

  6. Bread looks awesome, Dearie. Wish I was as talented as you in the homemade bread department. I hope you have a lovely time with your guests tomorrow.


  7. Great job on the bread, Faye. That British loaf is the same recipe I use for my daily bread, although I use half the salt and I don't always use white flour. Sometimes I substitute grain flour, rye or corn and barley flour. When I use these denser flours, I sometimes have to increase the water a little.

    Stay warm. xx

  8. I don't make my own bread now, but used to make a nice loaf using half brown flour.
    We love our different breads here in UK!

  9. Hi Faye, Your bread looks fantastic! and love those sesame seeds... really nothing better than home made bread to make a home feel and smell full of love.
    I am about 1/2 way through making a double batch of rolls.. very similar recipe except mine has a couple T. of oil. made the same ones a couple days ago and they disappeared too quickly.
    cheers, xo.

  10. Hi Faye;

    Your breads sound marvelous! I wonder why so many different shapes were originally created?

    We have never had our car searched at the border, but I have heard horror stories from some. Did they neatly put everything back into your car for you or did they leave it tossed around the car outside?


    1. Hi Laurie..It was on the American side so they just went through the car and as we were inside we couldn't see what was going on.. I doubt they took anything out as there was not much there.. Just old woman stuff.. grin.. My bag of crochet, notebooks, camera, purse, phone, lunch and extra socks.. grin.. Not much excitement there.. They were very mannerly, though.. I suppose there are all kinds up to stuff now so I don't blame them... It is coming back to Canada I think where they take everything out and cause so much xo
      When are we getting together??...

    2. I haven't heard, before, of anyone I know being searched on the American side - makes sense that they would perform random searches though. I am glad that it was simple and that you were not out in the cold repacking your car.

      I have been thinking we should meet up, too. The brighter sun we have been seeing makes one think that summer is coming, and with that, possibilities. I just might be able to crawl out of the cave. LOL


  11. Hmmm fresh baked bread smells lovely and your loaves look wonderful
    Enjoy you weekend!

  12. Thanks for sharing these recipes and the pictures. I have never seen or heard of these breads so I might have to give them a try. I am always wanting to try new things. No snow here as of now but they are predicting a small amount for overnight. Enjoy your day and God bless.

  13. Gee thanks, Faye. Now on top of everything else I have to do today, now I MUST go bake bread!!!! Just kidding. Thanks for the recipes and the photos. The breads are lovely and if they tasted as good as they look, I'm sure you have a happy hubby. Happy Weekend.

  14. Fantastic more food Faye :-)
    Yep, recycling stuff has been around for years here. I think your probably on about the Make do and Mend culture of war years. It still goes on :-)
    Hope your over your surprise search. I would look so guilty even if I had nothing to hide :-) Someone once found a two week old dirty hanky in my jeans pocket coming back from a holiday :-) She looked so disappointing, I felt sorry for her :-) Take care Faye and keep baking :-) x x x

  15. Thanks for sharing the recipes! I love baking breads of all kinds!

  16. I love bloomer bread and tend to buy it most weeks from the supermarket here in the UK,, I haven't seen cottage loaves in our shops here in the UK for some years. I do remember as a child, Birds the bakers use to make and sell them as I would have to queue in the shop every Saturday morning for my mums bread order, those were the days . . .


  17. " Jesus não julga, nem condena. Ele simplesmente ama." (Momento de fé)
    Uma linda e abençoada semana!!!
    Beijos Marie.

  18. I will try out the bread. I thought about making bread for sandwiches instead of buying it. I used to do that. I'm not sure I like what we get any more. It's Orowheat, which is good but am not impressed any more. I like the pita pocket bread I get at Trader Joes but it's expensive to eat it all the time. Have a good Sunday. We'll probably stay home in the a.m. Watch tv church, one man I really like it on. Hugs!

  19. I can SMELL your beautiful breads from here! Mm-mm!

    Happy weekend back to you,

  20. My oldest daughter and I have been experimenting with bagel recipes this week. We have made some good bagels but we want to make great bagels so the search continues for the perfect recipe. Bagel shops charge around $1 per bagel and we want to make bagel shop quality bagels for what adds up to less than a dollar per dozen.

    I am glad you had a good day out! My Mom reads aloud when my parents travel. They have read through dozens of huge novels that way and thoroughly enjoy it.

  21. mmm...bread! I've got a batch of steel cut oats no-knead bread on the cupboard tonight. I'll get up early in the morning to bake it so the kids can have fresh, hot bread for breakfast before school.

  22. That is some beautiful bread! It turned out so pretty! I'm sorry you got searched at the border. That must have been a little frustrating!

  23. Thank you soooo much for all of the lovely recipes. The weather here has been quite cold for our area, so I have been trying out some of your good food :^) I will bake the bread this week one evening, and we will have a feast :^)
    I love visiting with you...we do/have/enjoy so many of the same things...mainly home/family and church (I am a music minister in an E and R church)
    Blessings to you,
    (the Texas home keeper)

  24. Faye,
    Your British breads look so delicious. I can smell them from here. There's always something yummy cooking at your house, my friend. I haven't had homemade bread in such a long time. Sounds so good to me.

    Have a happy week.


  25. Faye
    All of your breads look good!
    My husband is the bread maker in our home.
    Before we moved permanently to Canada we would get pulled over on occasion too. But since we live here we never have.

  26. Hi Faye, You never know what will happen when you cross the border although MOST times it is o.k.
    Where did you go? Calais? Houlton?
    Your breads look yummy. I still make a lot of homemade bread--for Doug and the family when someone is here. When we go to Halifax I usually take a double or triple recipe in a big Tupperware bowl. Every time we stop I punch it down and bake it when we get there .Now if I could just find the perfect gluten free one I would be a happy camper.
    Take care and I'm still hoping we can meet soon.

  27. Lovely. I want to try the recipe soon. Thanks for sharing.

  28. Lovely. I want to try the recipe soon. Thanks for sharing.

  29. Hello, Faye. This is the first time I have stumbled on your blog. I’m British and yes, I make my own bread. I usually make it with 50:50 strong white and wholemeal. These days I am rather disabled so I make it in a bread maker but often get the dough out and shape it and cook it in the ordinary oven. Either way it is wonderful! I sometimes get stoneground flour from a local miller – scrummy!

    What was the book you were reading? I was a post war baby (born 1951) and that period intrigues me. My mother (sadly now dead) learned her housekeeping skills then as she and my father married in 1940.

  30. Mmmmm... Years ago when I was in England I had homemade bread and I remember it was soooo good. The British sure can bake.
    Thank you for stopping by my blog, I enjoyed your comment.
    We are about a hour away from Campbellton.
    Take care and stay safe through the storm. I am like you I would rather the snow then freezing rain