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La miche ‘Abeille & Cigale’
From mortar trowel to beam plane, the only thing missing from the Kerbeleg workshops was a bread kneader. So I’m working hard to find the next signature recipe for our breakfasts, after the Corinthian bread of the Alpine summer. So it’s the ‘Bee & Cicada’ loaf to which I’ve added a hint of honey and a generous handful of Provençal herbs. Here’s the recipe for those of you who are tempted..
1kg Type 55 flour
4 heaped teaspoons brown sugar (60g)
1 tablespoon mixed flower honey
60cl warm water
2 teaspoons (8g) dried baker’s yeast (or 2 sachets or the equivalent in fresh yeast if you know how to make it)
3 teaspoons salt
4 teaspoons herbes de Provence (15g)
1 large red salad bowl from the 70’s that has seen all the summer picnics organised by grandparents (optional)
In a large mixing bowl: Pour in most of the flour (save half a mustard glass to line the bread before baking) and the herbes de Provence.
In a large bowl : Pour in the dried yeast, sugar and honey (yeast loves sugar to ‘wake up’, but hates contact with salt, so only add the salt later directly into the dough). Add the 60cl of water. Mix everything together with a whisk, incorporating the spoonful of honey, until the sugar and yeast have dissolved.
Leave to rest for 10 minutes, then stir one last time and pour directly into the flour-herb mixture.
Knead for 2 minutes then sprinkle the dough with salt.
Leave the flour to soak in for 5-10 minutes.
Knead again for 5-10 minutes
Leave to rest for 1 to 2 hours
Fold the dough into 4 then leave to rest and rise again for 1 hour
Shape your ball by flouring the dough and then using a very sharp knife, make small sharp cuts. The dough will release through these cuts.
Place in the oven at 230 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on your taste (crispness)
Leave to cool for 10 minutes and enjoy with a dab of semi-salted Breton butter.
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