Wholemeal Spelt and treacle bread served with a healthy and hearty beef stew as seen on Saturday Am on TV3
Wholemeal Spelt and black treacle
700g wholemeal spelt flour
15g Fresh yeast (7g or 1 sachet if using dried yeast)
35g black treacle
Mix together the wholemeal spelt flour with the treacle and salt in a bowl. Crumble the yeast into the flour. Form a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the water. Bring the ingredients together to form a rough dough. Turn out on to a clean work surface and knead for 6 to 8 minutes or until the windowpane effect is achieved. The dough should be smooth and elastic. When working with spelt flour the dough requires slightly less kneading than when using regular wheat flour.
Once the dough has been sufficiently kneaded place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a damp tea towel or wrap in cling film and let it prove for 30 mins at room temperature.
After 30 minutes turn the dough out onto a clean work surface and stretch the dough out like a sheet. At this stage we want to incorporate a fold which helps to build strength within the dough. Fold the dough like an envelope. Left over right, then top over bottom. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and leave to prove for a further 60 minutes
Turn out the dough on to a clean kitchen surface and knock back. Knocking back is exactly what it sounds like, you want to knock the air from the dough. Shape the dough into a rough round shape. If making a round loaf, shape the dough to form into a tight ball. Place the shaped dough upside down into the proving basket, seam side facing up or alternatively a bowl, lined with a lightly floured tea towel will work fine (without the cloth, your loaf will stick in the bowl and you won't be able to turn it out). Alternatively, the dough can be shaped and placed into a bread tin. This recipe will produce 2 x 600g loaves. One for yourself and one for a friend. Alternatively, the baked loaf can be frozen. Once the dough has been shaped Leave the dough to prove at room temperature for 50 minutes.
Pre-heat the oven to 230°C/425°F/Gas 7 and place a baking tray in the bottom of the oven to heat up. This tray will be used to create steam when baking the bread. Turn the dough out of the basket onto a baking tray (a separate baking tray not the one that has been preheated in the oven). Or if using a bread tin dust the surface of the dough with some wholemeal spelt flour before placing into the oven. Place the loaves in the oven. To create a blast of steam throw in some ice cubes or hot water from a kettle onto the preheated baking tray. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until a good crust has formed and the loaves sound hollow when tapped on the base.
Healthily and hearty beef stew with Jerusalem artichoke, rainbow carrots and baby swedes – Serves 4
1 tbsp. of sunflower oil
800g of trimmed and diced beef shin
1 large onion finely diced
2 sticks of celery roughly chopped
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1-inch piece of fresh ginger finely chopped
500ml of chicken stock/beef stock
2 sprigs of Rosemary
2 bay leaves
150g rainbow carrots (regular carrots are fine also)
150g baby swedes, washed and quartered
150g Jerusalem artichokes, washed and quartered
100g of mushrooms
2 tsp Dijon mustard
Sea salt and black pepper
Handful of chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 160C
Place onto a high heat a heavy based frying pan and add half the oil. When the pan is very hot add half of the beef along with some salt and pepper and brown well on all sides. Transfer the beef to an over proof casserole dish. Repeat with the remaining beef.
Once all the beef has been browned and placed into the casserole dish Lower the heat on the frying pan and cook the diced onion for approximately 5 minutes until softened. If the pan starts to stick add a dash of stock and continue cooking. To the softened onion add the celery, ginger and garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the cooked onion and celery to the beef along with the rosemary, bay leaves and some salt and pepper. Deglaze the frying pan with the chicken stock, bring to a gentle simmer before adding to the beef. Place the lid on the casserole dish and place into the preheated oven for 1 and half hours to cook.
Take the casserole dish from the oven and add the carrots, artichokes, swedes and mushrooms. Mix everything together and return to the oven, lid on and cook for a further hour.
Take the casserole dish from the oven, remove the lid and finish the stew with Dijon mustard and chopped parsley, Check for seasoning. Serve in bowls with a generous chunk of the freshly baked wholemeal spelt and treacle bread