Spelt... easy bread.

Wheat has come a long way in the last 50 years, in fact in many ways it has undergone a revolution. That revolution was not about making it more palatable, tasty or digestible but rather increasing the yields: in other words making more profit.

That profit has come at a cost, and the cost is that modern wheat is no longer suited for our guts. It is lower in nutrients and higher in gluten, and is verging on the indigestible. It is not so much that people are getting wheat intolerant, but modern-wheat intolerant.

There is a simple way around this problem, and that is to bake your own spelt bread. Spelt is lower in gluten and easier to digest; more importantly, it hasn't undergone a revolution, the spelt you buy now is essentially the same spelt we've been eating for 2 500 years.

This also means that spelt flour is a tad more expensive, but you save far more by baking your own bread. The main advantage of spelt in baking is it is very fast and easy. Spelt only requires rising once, making it a lot simpler and quicker to cook.  

It takes about an hour to cook, but most of that time is spent loitering around surfing the internet or drinking coffee whilst oven and yeast do hard work.

Easy Spelt bread recipe

Firstly get your ingredients: 

Spelt flour - You can have wholegrain or white. White will make a fluffier loaf, wholegrain will make a denser but more flavoursome one. I normally mix the two flours

Yeast

Sugar

Salt

Mixed seeds to add that decadent bourgeoisie touch to the loaf.

Next get some scales, this makes the whole process super easy:

Measure out 500grams of flour, add a generous pinch of salt (technically one tsp), mixed seeds and any other fancy-pants addition.

Bung this in a bowl and put it in the oven at 60 degrees or so. England is a cold place and yeast likes warmth so its worth making sure its going to get a nice warm place to multiple.

Next prepare your yeast:

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You need 300mls of water so just weigh 300grams. This needs to be around hot bath temperature so a 50:50 mix of boiling and tap should just about do it. Too hot and you kill your yeast, too cool and it wont rise. Add a teaspoon of sugar and dissolve into it. Then add a tablespoon of dried yeast powder and stir

Leave for 5-10 minutes and you should find that there is a bubbly froth on top: perfect!

Take warmed flour mix from oven, mix together and batter it remorselessly for about 10 minutes. This is a good time to take out any unvented frustration against taxman; Jose Mourinho; the state of Britain; spouse etc etc

By the time you're finished it should look like this:

You'll almost certainly need to add a little flour; if it sticks to your fingers it's too wet.

Put a tea-towel on top; let it rise for half an hour (this is where having the pre-warmed bowl and flour comes in useful); then slap it in the oven at 200 degrees for 40 minutes (set the alarm).

The result should look like this. Remove from tin, let cool for 15 minutes (important) then enjoy with  butter jam and loved ones.

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