This is the kind of bread that once you start eating, you can’t stop… You have been warned! You can add anything to this bread, not just cranberries and fennel seeds. Apricot and poppy seeds are really good, or we sometimes crumble in some cooked black pudding with chopped sage.
Place your water into a large mixing bowl and add your flour, yeast, salt, sugar, dried cranberries and fennel seeds. Mix with your hand for about 10 minutes until you have smooth dough. Place into a clean, well-oiled bowl and cover with a damp clean tea towel, then leave to rest at room temperature.
After 30 minutes, wet your hands with water and slide them underneath the dough on the far side of the bowl. Stretch the dough up and towards you. Do the same with the dough nearest you, stretching it up and towards the far side of the bowl. This is called ‘putting a fold’ into the dough. Cover again and leave for another 30 minutes. Repeat the folding process, cover, and leave for 20 minutes.
Tip the dough out onto a well-floured worktop and shape it into a smooth, round loaf. Place it onto a greased and floured baking tray or into a cloth-lined proving basket and cover with the damp tea towel. Leave to prove for one hour.
After five more minutes, spray again, then
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