Servings: 2 medium loaves, about 10 – 12 slices each Difficulty: Easy
Time: About 3 hours including proving time.
An interesting mixture of flavours that gel together magically to give a rich, sweet and wholesome bread with a soft, springy texture.
- 500g strong bread flour (350g wholemeal + 150g white, or 300/200)
- 50g unsalted butter, softened
- 10g salt
- 7g instant dried yeast
- About 330ml tepid water
- 70g Blue Stilton cheese, crumbled
- 70g prunes, chopped
- 1 tbsp treacle
- Weigh out the butter and soften
- Lightly oil a large bowl (unless you intend proving the dough in the mixing bowl)
- Mix together the flours, salt and yeast. (Make sure the salt and yeast do not come into direct contact.)
- Add in the butter and water. Mix thoroughly. (I like to use my stand mixer with the paddle tool attached.)
- If kneading by hand, tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 – 15 minutes. If using a stand mixer, simply change to the dough hook and use it on slow for about 8 – 10 minutes.
- Put the kneaded dough into the oiled bowl and cover with cling film or a damp tea towel. Leave it to double in volume – about 60 – 80 minutes.
- Tip out the risen dough onto a lightly floured surface and knock back, punching out any air pockets, then fold it over itself a couple of times.
- Spread the dough out to flatten it, then dab the Stilton and prunes into it as evenly as possible. Drizzle the treacle over it too, then fold it all in. (This will probably be sticky and a bit messy.)
- Divide the dough into two halves and shape them into rounds. Use cupped hands to drag the outer surface down and under each dough ball. Pinch together any loose pieces of dough under the ball itself. (NB Try to avoid having any prunes on the outer surface as they will easily burn.)
- Place the dough balls well apart on a lined and lightly floured baking tray. Dust each one with a little white flour. Slide the baking tray inside a large plastic bag. (I like to use a white swing bin liner.) Inflate the bag and fold the loose ends under the baking tray to create an air-filled micro-climate for the second rise to take place. Leave for about 40 – 50 minutes to increase in volume again. While this is happening turn on the oven to 210C/fan 190C
- When the two pieces of dough have risen, dust them again lightly with white flour and cut 2 – 3 diagonal slashes on top of each piece.
- Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 30 minutes.