Bread is a staple food and can be found in almost every country in the world. Bread is especially a favorite here in Nigeria. Basically all families have bread and tea for breakfast more than two times in a week. Bread is also enjoyed with akara, ewa agoyin, porridge beans and pap. However, we chose to enjoy it the fact remains that we Nigerians love our bread!
The main ingredients used to prepare bread are flour (dough), water and sugar; although the proportions of types of flour and other ingredients may vary. Bread comes in different types, shapes, sizes, and textures depending on the baker and recipe.
It can be eaten at anytime of the day, either as a snack, or used as an ingredient in other culinary preparations like sandwiches. Making your own bread at home isn’t that difficult, if you follow the guidelines below.
Ingredients for Making Bread
225g (1 ½ Cups) Strong plain white flour or plain whole wheat flour
1 level teaspoon salt
1 level teaspoon sugar
15g (1 level tbspoon) soft tub margarine
1 sachet (6g) easy blend dried yeast or fast action easy blend dried yeast
150 ml (2/3 cup) warm water
Steps To Baking Homemade Bread
Mix the flour, salt and yeast in a large bowl. Make a hole in the center then add the margarine and water, mixing thoroughly. If the dough seems a little stiff, add 1-2 tablespoons of water.
Tip the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it until the dough becomes very smooth. Place it in a lightly oiled bowl to rise. Leave to rise for 1 hour until it doubles in size.
Knock back the dough, and then gently mould it into a ball. If you’re a mixed fruit lover, you can knead some mixed fruit into the dough during this second kneading.
Place it on a baking tray lined with parchment to prove for one more hour until doubled in size.
Dust the loaf with flour and cut across, about 6cm wide, into the top of the loaf.
Preheat the oven to 220˚C/fan 200˚C/gas 7 and bake for 25-30 minutes. If you’re using a stove and pot make sure the temperature is high enough to bake the bread.
Bake until golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped underneath. You can also use a toothpick to check; its ready if it comes out clean.
Note: Be sure to test the potency of your yeast before using. Simply add a teaspoon of yeast to a tea cup of sugar mixed water. If it froths, then it safe to use.
Making your own bread could be so much fun plus the delicious aroma of freshly baked bread that will linger in your home is quite a delight. Enjoy your bread the Nigerian way with ewa agoyin, pap, custard, tea, coffee, butter, jam, groundnuts, pepper soup, fired eggs, stew or just water.