Baking Christmas Breads with Waitrose #recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias

There is something about wintertime, the build up to Christmas. It’s the delicious scents and smells which go with the season. The wonderful recipes which are suddenly the most acceptable to feast on. And there is nothing as perfect as cwtching up on the sofa with my little family and a host of favourite breads, preferably with an accompanying hot chocolate.Waitrose selection of flour for baking funFor me, whenever bread baking is in store, a trip to Waitrose has to be in order, I love the range of flours they have and I always end up leaving with far more than on my shopping list. And of course there’s nothing like a food shop in the run up to Christmas to add a few more festive flavours to the kitchen cupboards.
And whilst we went in to stock up on bread flours, we ended up leaving with the ingredients for our favourite Christmas breads- Panettone and Stollen.Making stollen and panettoneAnd after a weekend of fun in the kitchen, controlling the excitement waiting to see if our breads rise, and then have patience in the baking process- of course, not quite achieving the full cooling process!

And so, for some really child-friendly recipes, for baking and for eating, these will definitely make your home a little bit more cosy.

And for an extra tip with Panettone, I find a really authentic bake can be obtained with a saucepan rather than adding another tin to the cupboard:
Baking cheat for Panettone
I’d love to hear about your festive recipes… and especially any cheats you might have!

Festive Stollen
Yields 1
A delicious marzipan filled bread- with lots of fruit to make it healthy!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
4 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
4 hr 30 min
Ingredients
  1. 500g strong white flour (a little more for dusting)
  2. 100g caster sugar
  3. 10g fast action yeast
  4. 10g salt
  5. 150g unsalted butter, softened
  6. 250ml milk
  7. ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  8. ½ tsp ground cloves
  9. ½ tsp vanilla extract
  10. 2 drops almond extract
  11. 55g blanched almonds, finely chopped
  12. 50g glace cherries, roughly chopped
  13. 100g raisins
  14. 125g sultanas
  15. 125g mixed peel
  16. 25g butter, melted
  17. 225g marzipan
  18. Icing sugar, for dusting
Instructions
  1. Put the flour and sugar in a large bowl.
  2. Add the yeast on one side of the bowl and the salt on the other.
  3. Add the softened butter and milk.
  4. Using a dough hook if using a mixer, mix for 10 minutes.
  5. If kneading, bring the mixture together gradually adding the milk to form a soft dough. Transfer to floured work surface and knead for 6-7 minutes, or until smooth and pliable.
  6. Mix the nutmeg, cloves, vanilla and almond extract, almonds, fruit and mixed peel together in a large bowl.
  7. Put the dough on top and knead from the outside into the centre incorporating the dried fruit and spices as you go.
  8. When everything has been fully incorporated, cover the bowl with cling film and leave to rise for 1-2 hours in a warm place, or until doubled in size.
  9. Flatten the dough and roll out on a lightly floured work surface to a rectangle so the short side matches the longest side of your baking tray.
  10. Brush with the melted butter.
  11. Roll out the marzipan so the long side is approximately the width of the dough.
  12. Place on top of the dough in the middle.
  13. Roll the dough up to enclose the marzipan and transfer to a baking tray lined with baking parchment.
  14. Cover and leave to rise for about an hour, or until risen and doubled in size.
  15. Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5 (fan 170C).
  16. When the dough is risen, bake for an hour. Remove from the oven and dust with icing sugar.
  17. Serve cold.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/

Black Cherry, Pistachio and Chocolate Panattone
Yields 1
A delicious Christmas treat using favourite ingredients
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
5 hr 30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
5 hr 30 min
Ingredients
  1. 500g/1lb 2oz strong white flour
  2. 10g salt
  3. 50g/2oz caster sugar
  4. 10g fast-action yeast
  5. 140ml/5fl oz warm milk
  6. 5 medium eggs
  7. 250g/9oz unsalted butter, softened
  8. 120g/4½oz dark cherries
  9. 120g/4½oz chocolate chips
  10. 120g/4½oz pistachios, chopped
Instructions
  1. Place the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, milk and the eggs into the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook.
  2. Mix slowly for two minutes, then increase the speed to medium and mix for a further 6-8 minutes until you have a soft dough.
  3. Add the softened butter and mix for another 5-8 minutes.
  4. Add the cherries, chocolate and pistachios, and combine.
  5. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave at room temperature for three hours.
  6. Line a tin/saucepan with baking parchment.
  7. Knock back the dough and place into the tin.
  8. Leave to prove at room temperature for an hour.
  9. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
  10. Bake for about 25 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 150C/300F/Gas 2 and bake for a further 35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
  11. Remove the panettone from the tin immediately and allow to cool.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/

Sunday evening snacks with Clover

I hold dear the family traditions you take and make your own.

Friday nights when we were little we’d go to my nan’s. And for supper, after our fish ‘n’ chips from John’s on Broadway, we’d have french stick, butter and cheese.
All these years on the smell of that supper stays with me.Simple homemade bread recipe My mum took that tradition and turned it into our Sunday evening tradition. On winter nights when we were still full from a hearty Sunday roast dinner, a pick ‘n’ mix would be put on the dining table, of pizza, garlic bread and cheese & crackers.

For us, now, life has moved on again. And there’s nothing I enjoy more on a Sunday afternoon than making our own bread. I try to keep bread out of my diet, but a chunk of homemade bread, with nothing artificial, is my treat. And making bread is one of the best and simplest ways to show children the magic of baking.Making breadAnd once our bread is cooled from the oven, or cooled to touch, there is nothing better than spreading Clover over it and devouring. Reinforcing that meals with #NothingArtificial are that much tastier.

Because Clover brings more to our bread than a delicious buttery taste, it’s made with naturally low-fat buttermilk, with half the saturated fat of regular butter. With no artificial ingredients, it is 100% natural.

And so it’s a welcome addition to our family supper and our take on a tradition for our little ones to reinterpret.

If taste is important in your family and you do your best to get the best into your family’s tummy, why not check out Clover’s facebook page, post a picture on their page and you can win a personalised Clover fridge magnet and branded oven gloves. By the end of the campaign, 10,000 £1 discount vouchers redeemable against Clover will be given away. 

Simple bread
Yields 2
A simple and easy loaf to bake with children
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Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
4 hr
Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
4 hr
Ingredients
  1. 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  2. 10g salt
  3. 7g fast-action dried yeast
  4. 40mls olive oil, plus extra for oiling
  5. 300mls tepid water
Instructions
  1. Put the flour in a food mixing bowl, add the salt on one side and the yeast on the other.
  2. Using a dough hook, pour the olive oil and 250mls of water in and start the mixer on a slow setting.
  3. Gradually add the remaining water and turn up to a medium setting, mix for a further 5 mins until you have a glossy dough which forms a smooth ball with an elasticity when falling from the hook.
  4. Put the dough into a lightly oiled large bowl, cover with oiled cling film or a tea towel, please in an airing cupboard for 1.5- 2 hours until doubled in size.
  5. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface, and divide into two.
  6. Knock back the individual dough, and shape into a loose rectangle, place in loaf tins.
  7. Cover with a tea towel and leave to prove in an airing cupboard for 1 hour.
  8. After 30mins turn the oven onto 220 degrees celcius and add a roasting tin half filled with water to the bottom of the oven.
  9. When the loaves are proved, lightly spray with water, dust with flour, and using a sharp knife make diagonal slashes across the top.
  10. Place the loaves on the middle shelf of the oven, and bake for 20mins.
  11. Lower the oven setting to 180 degrees celcius and bake for a further 10 mins.
  12. The loaves should have a golden colour and sound hollowed when the bottom is tapped.
  13. Cool on a wire rack.
  14. Slice and smoother in Clover.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Clover. All views and opinions contained are our own.

Attempting Baguettes – A recipe

Joining in this week’s Great Bloggers Bake Off has been a bit more stressful than it should have.

I love baking bread, but this week for some reason it just wasn’t working for me.

I was attempting baguettes, and three attempts later, despite all baguettes being literally devoured by the children, I haven’t been able to perfect the version.
Baguette recipe
But if you’re looking for a perfect snack, a take on baguettes, well these in sweet and savoury were a massive hit.

And, if it was just me having a bad weekend, then they might also make the perfect baguettes.
Baguettes and Brie - recipe

Baguettes
Yields 2
A sweet or savoury baguette, perfect for snacking.
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Prep Time
3 hr
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
3 hr 45 min
Prep Time
3 hr
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
3 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 250g strong white flour (for wholemeal use 125g white and 125g wholemeal strong flour).
  2. 5g salt
  3. 7g fast-action dried yeast
  4. 30ml olive oil for savoury or 2tbps honey for sweet
  5. 200mls water
  6. Olive oil for bowl
Instructions
  1. Put the flour in the mixing bowl, with salt on one side and yeast on the other. Add the olive oil/ honey and most of the water.
  2. Using a food mixer, start the mixer slowly, adding the remainder of the water, and allow 5 minutes on a slow setting to form a smooth dough.
  3. Tip the dough into an oiled bowl, cover, and leave to prove for at 2 hours.
  4. Tip out the dough onto a floured worktop, divide the dough in two.
  5. Knock back the dough and roll into baguettes.
  6. Place on tray, cover and prove until doubled in size.
  7. Preheat an oven to 200 degrees celsius and place a roasting tin with boiled water at the base.
  8. Just before baking, slash the top of the baguettes.
  9. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown and with a hollow sound when the bottom is tapped.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/

Mummy Mishaps
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Bara Brith

CM’s half term homework at this time of year focuses on the forthcoming Eisteddfod, last year we made a wonderful papier mache dragon, but this year with not so much time to play with we decided on baking.
A lack of a baking stone meant Welsh cakes were out of the question, so I opted to get CM’s love for fruit flowing by meshing our favourite fruit loaf with a traditional Bara Brith.
One of the features of Bara Brith is soaking the fruit in tea, which was definitely a cause of contention, given coffee is known by the children to soothe all of my ills!

Bara Brith

Seren Bara Brith
Yields 2
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Prep Time
2 hr
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
2 hr 45 min
Prep Time
2 hr
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
2 hr 45 min
Ingredients
  1. 50g dried apricots, chopped
  2. 50g glace cherries, chopped
  3. 50g dried cranberries
  4. 100g raisins
  5. 100g sultanas
  6. 200mls strong warm tea
  7. 200mls warm milk
  8. 1 sachet (7g) fast-action yeast
  9. 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  10. 1tsp salt
  11. 75g butter
  12. 1tsp mixed spice
  13. 1tsp ground cinnamon
  14. 50g dark brown sugar
  15. 1 medium egg, beaten
  16. Oil for greasing
Instructions
  1. Soak the fruit in tea, preferably overnight but definitely for a couple of hours.
  2. With the milk warm to touch, add the yeast and leave for 15mins.
  3. Put the flour and salt in a mixing bowl, rub the butter into the mix and blend into fine breadcrumbs.
  4. Add the sugar and spice, and then the fruit.
  5. Add the beaten egg and the yeast mix, to form a dough.
  6. Knead until smooth- around 10mins.
  7. Oil the bowl, and add the dough, cover with oiled cling film.
  8. Place in a warm place for 1hr or until doubled in size.
  9. Grease a loaf tin.
  10. Knockback the dough, shape and put in the loaf tin.
  11. Cover with either oiled cling film or a damp tea cloth and prove for 30mins in a warm place.
  12. Preheat the oven at 200 degrees celsius.
  13. Bake for 20mins, cover with foil and bake for a further 25mins.
  14. Remove, turn out and cool.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/
Baking with children

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Bread- two ways

I had plans to make alternative breads to my usual white so on a trip to Waitrose in search of polenta (how difficult is it to find potenta?!) I was in awe of their selection of flours.

As I left the supermarket, with a basket weighed down, my plans for a Sunday afternoon baking were sorted.

Bread two ways

Spelt Bread
Yields 1
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Prep Time
1 hr 45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Prep Time
1 hr 45 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
2 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. 250g spelt flour
  2. 250g strong white bread flour
  3. 1/2tsp salt
  4. 300ml warm water
  5. 7g fast active yeast sachet
  6. 1tbsp honey
  7. 1tbsp olive oil
Instructions
  1. In a cup, stir together the water, yeast and honey and set aside.
  2. Mix the flours and salt in a mixing bowl, and create a well.
  3. Pour the wet mix into the mixing bowl and bring together the ingredients with a wooden spoon.
  4. As the mixture binds add the olive oil and knead until the dough is smooth (10mins by hand, 5mins with a dough hook in a mixer).
  5. Oil the mixing bowl and place the dough inside, cover with oiled cling film and place in a warm place (airing cupboard) for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  6. Knock back the dough and place into a floured loaf tin, or shape and place on a baking tray. Cover with either oiled cling film or damp tea towel, and place in a warm place for 30mins.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius and bake the loaf for 30mins or until hollow to tap.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/
Rye bread
Yields 1
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Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
4 hr
Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
4 hr
Ingredients
  1. 200g Rye flour
  2. 200g strong white bread flour
  3. 7g fast-acting dried yeast
  4. 1/2 tsp salt
  5. 1tbsp honey
  6. 250mls warm water
Instructions
  1. In a cup, stir together the water, yeast and honey and set aside.
  2. Mix the flours and salt in a mixing bowl, and create a well.
  3. Pour the wet mix into the mixing bowl and bring together the ingredients with a wooden spoon.
  4. Knead until the dough is smooth (10mins by hand, 5mins with a dough hook in a mixer).
  5. Oil the mixing bowl and place the dough inside, cover with oiled cling film and place in a warm place (airing cupboard) for 2 hours, or until doubled in size.
  6. Knock back the dough and place into a floured loaf tin, or shape and place on a baking tray. Cover with either oiled cling film or damp tea towel, and place in a warm place for 1 hour.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius and place a roasting tin in the bottom of the oven. When the tin is hot, half fill with boiling water.
  8. Bake the loaf for 30mins or until hollow to tap.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/
Two breads

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Fruit Loaf

Fruit loaf recipeThere is something about the cold weather which makes homemade bread even more welcoming.
Fruit bread with a cup of tea in the afternoon just makes me feel grateful for my lovely warm office in the comfort of my own home.
And fortunately it’s a great one for getting the children involved with too. Choosing the fruit and trying out new spices is a part of the fun of this recipe. Added to the excitement as the dough seemingly magically doubles in size by being in the airing cupboard creates some interesting conversations.

Fruit Loaf
Yields 2
A delicious Winter to Spring loaf
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Prep Time
2 hr
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
2 hr 20 min
Prep Time
2 hr
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
2 hr 20 min
Ingredients
  1. 50g chopped, dried apricots
  2. 50g raisins
  3. 50g dried cranberries
  4. 50g chopped, dried mangoes
  5. 50g chopped, glace cherries
  6. 200ml orange juice
  7. 500g strong white flour
  8. 50g caster sugar
  9. 1tsp mixed spice
  10. 1.5tsp cinnamon
  11. 14g fast active yeast
  12. 50g melted, unsalted butter
  13. 150mls semi-skimmed milk
  14. 1 medium egg, beaten
  15. Additional oil for greasing and flour for dusting
Instructions
  1. Soak the fruit in orange juice for 30mins, sieve the fruit and reserve the juice.
  2. Combine the flour, sugar, spices and yeast in a mixing bowl.
  3. Create a well, and add the melted butter, milk, orange juice and beaten egg.
  4. Gradually combine the dry mix into the liquid with a wooden spoon and as the dough forms tip onto a floured surface and begin kneading until the dough becomes soft and springy.
  5. Lightly oil the mixing bowl and cover with lightly oiled cling film or a damp tea towel.
  6. Place in a warm place (airing cupboard) for an hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
  7. Knock the dough back and divide in two.
  8. Dust two loaf tins and shape the dough into ovals, place the dough into the tins, cover with a damp tea towel and return to prove for 30mins.
  9. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius.
  10. Bake the loaves for 20mins, with a golden brown appearance.
  11. Remove from oven, leave to cool before removing from the tins.
  12. Cut into slices and enjoy with butter.
An Organised Mess http://anorganisedmess.com/