Monday, 9 May 2011

New England Anadama bread

Anadama bread is given its distinctive colour and flavour by the use of cornmeal and molasses. I am using the only kind of molasses I have been able to find here: it's very dark in colour and has an extremely strong flavour. You might be able to find lighther, more refined and golden-coloured molasses which would give the bread a more subtle flavour. The recipe I'm using here is from Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice.

New England Anadama bread

Ingredients: (for two loaves)

For the soaker:
  • 1 cup cornmeal (polenta)
  • 1 cup water, at room temperature

For the dough:
  • 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 cup water, lukewarm
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp molasses
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • cornmeal for dusting (optional)

New England Anadama bread


The night before baking, mix the soaker ingredients together, cover with plastic wrap and let sit overnight at room temperature.

The next day, make a sponge by mixing 2 cups of flour, the soaker, the yeast and water. Cover with a towel and leave to ferment for about an hour.

Add the remaining flour, the salt, molasses and butter and stir until you get a soft sticky mass.

Knead for about 10 minutes, adding a little flour if necessary. Transfer to a lightly oiled container, cover with a towel and leave to ferment for about 90 minutes or until the dough doubles in size.

Divide the dough in two. Shape into loaves, place in lightly oiled baking tins, mist with a little spray oil or water, cover with a towel and proof at room temperature for 60 to 90 minutes.

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.

Mist the bread with a little water and sprinkle a little cornmeal. Bake at 180°C for 20 minutes, then rotate the pans 180° and continue baking for 20 to 30 minutes, until the loaves are golden brown.

Immediately remove from the baking tins and leave to cool on a rack for at least an hour before serving.

New England Anadama bread

New England Anadama bread

Submitted to YeastSpotting.

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