Traditional White Bread (Doves farm)
If you don’t bake your own bread, then at least make this one switch by visiting a good local indie baker who gets up early and makes real bread from the base ingredients (water, wheat, yeast and salt). Most breads in supermarkets are full of improvers, milk, palm oil and other ingredients, and wrapped in plastic (most ‘fresh baked bread’ is just shipped in par-baked and finished off in-store).
Don’t give stale, crusty or buttered bread to birds, as it can choke or smear on feathers, affecting waterproofing/insulation. Keep fresh dough away from pets (can expand in the stomach – many loaves also contain toxic ingredients like garlic, onion, dried fruits, chocolate etc).
Use good flour (locally-milled grains helps keep windmills alive!) It’s not gluten-free but spelt flour (an ancient relative of wheat) is often gentler on sensitive tummies. Store flour in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Don’t mix old and new flour.
Use a breathable linen bag to store your bread, it will last longer than in plastic. You can extend the life of your loaf by keeping the cut side covered (freeze leftover bread and just put them straight in the toaster). Food Saver Bread Sheets are infused with powerful botanicals (just drop a sheet near fresh baked bread or rolls to keep them fresh).
Support Your Local Indie Baker
In France, le boulangerie is so important to the culture, that French bakers are not allowed to take holidays at the same time! In a similar spirit, Rough Handmade (Liverpool) makes everything fresh then gives anything not sold to local charities. The founders say ‘you don’t just buy a loaf here – it’s a place where all your senses wake up’.
Handmade Bakery (Yorkshire) was England’s first community-supported shop that offered ‘bread bonds’ to fund it, then people got fresh loaves in return. Today this thriving bakery still sells bread and offers classes on baking to local people.
Simple Bread Recipes from Doves Farm
Here are a few simple bread recipes from Doves Farm (the 80 plus vegan recipes include bloomers, rye bread, sourdough and starters, spelt breads, malthouse and international breads from Italy and India.
White Bread in 2 Hours (also as Wholemeal Bread)