During the winter months, I always feel more hungry. I think it comes with the instinct of wanting to stay in doors near the fire wearing all your knitwear all at once. I am very much a summer girl. Don’t get me wrong, I had a fantastic time in the snow last week, but I would rather be hot then really cold. Though that is a debate that the other half and I argue about a lot!
Winter brings out the nester in me, well more than it does generally anyway. This time encourages me to always have something freshly baked in the house, pretty much at all times. Generally it is something sweet, but I decided to do something savoury and moorish this week. The recipe is from Lorraine Pascal’s cook book, Baking Made Easy. The pictures show my second attempt as they came out much better. The next time I make this I think I am going to experiment with some more flavourings. The recipe is actually called ‘Big fat salt & pepper Breadsticks’ so thats what I made, with the additional cheese ones I decided to throw in on top of them.
450g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
1x7g sachet of fast-action dried yeast
1 1/2 salt
250-275ml warm water
2 tbsp extra-virgin oil
2 tbsp sea salt
2 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
Dust two large baking trays with flour.
Put the flour, yeast and salt into large bowl. Add enough water to make a soft but not sticky dough. I actually found that the problem I had the first time round was that, I perhaps took this instruction too literally, and as a result the dough didn’t come together as well as it did the second time. I would say that a little sticky is alright as the kneading you will be doing immediately after this will bring it all together and equally disperse the water. You will need to knead for 10 minutes manually, 5 minutes on an electric mixer with a dough hook. I tried the second time with an electric mixer, but found that hand kneading it worked much better.
Divide the dough into 12 balls – should be 60g each. Roll the balls into sausages. You can plait some of them which I prefer for visual reasons but also, the cheese melts into the dips of the plait
Now you need to oil a piece of cling film, big enough to cover your breadsticks and leave for 30 minutes or until they have doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees of 180 for a fan oven.
Once that is done take the cling film off and season your breadsticks as your wish. You can honestly put pretty much anything on them. I am thinking the next time maybe cinnamon and sugar?!
Pop them in the oven for 20 minutes, as always keeping an eye on them. You don’t want them to burn. Once done you can have them with a cup of tea, hummus, chocolate spread. Pretty much anything! Enjoy!