JOANNA'S FOOD: family cooking, from scratch, every day

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Frying pan bread

or ... A quick-fix breakfast bread for the disorganised

Sooner or later, if you're making all your own bread, you're likely to arrive at that moment, immediately before a meal, when there's NO BREAD and NO TIME. Unless you are super-organised. Which I'm not.

Yesterday, I was out at an all-day course. In the train on the way back from Oxford, I planned the cooking which needed to be sorted before we went out to a community party. Get supper started, make a dozen canapes to take to the party, organise the bread to be made on return from party.

Supper, easy. Canapes, less easy: returned to find Lucius had eaten the last of the bread which was to be the toasted basis of my cheesy morsels. More time than planned therefore spent on canapes. No bread prep. Never mind, I'll make a quick loaf when we get back. Party. Dinner. Collapse of cook, no thought of bread.

Fast forward to this morning, Saturday breakfast, the culinary highlight of Lucius's week (seriously). No bread.

This is what you do:

Mix equal quantities of interesting flour of your choice with white self-raising flour. Add a little salt. Perhaps baking powder, only be careful, because you don't want that slightly acrid taste of too much bp, so I don't bother, less light aka leaden is fine here, because this whole method is a compromise. Add enough water to make a soft dough (if you add too much, chuck in a bit more flour). As there's no yeast here, you can add it straight from the cold tap. Knead lightly and form into a round, rolling or pressing it as thin as you can. Fry gently in a little olive oil, the less the better ... but dry frying isn't a good idea here, as it burns. It needs at least five minutes on each side for the flour to cook through, so if it starts to catch, flip it over and turn down the heat.

It's good with an egg on top, not bad with marmalade. If you use decent flour (and if you're making your own bread, you're more or less bound to have interesting flour in your larder), it's better than bought. And I suppose you could also use this to accompany a curry, a quick naan-ish bread, although I've never done that.


MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Lucius thinks your a superwoman. End of scene!
Even if Lucius doesn't see the superwoman, I do.

aislinnv said...

Sounds rather like a bannock to me? I've only made these using bere, but I agree that almost any other interesting flour would work.

SueCooksWild said...

I agree with Tanna. I got tired just reading about all that you were trying to accomplish!! Your quick bread sounds like just the thing for a stressed out bread baker!

Joanna said...

Tanna, thanks for kind words. Sadly, Lucius knows I'm not superwoman, he knows just how unsuperwoman a woman can be ... but he likes this bread, and that's a step forward. I'm so disorganised that we had to have it again this morning, but I have now made a quick loaf for supper. Anyway, you are the one who baked her way across the Atlantic in a small yacht. Really inspiring, trust me!

Aislinn, you're absolutely right, I've reinvented the bannock. Your bere flour sounds wonderful, not something I've met before, do you know anywhere can you buy it other than Orkney? Although I am looking for an excuse to visit Orkney ... but buying a 2lb bag of bere may be stretching things a little ;)

Sue ... so good to hear from you ... and thanks for kind words. Yes - remember this when you've got no bread and no time!

Anonymous said...

I run out of bread often and am always scampering for a quick bread recipe. Thanks :)

aislinnv said...

Joanna, if you're London-based, you might try Orkney Rose at Borough Market - although I'm not sure about what exactly they sell and in what quantities.
Golspie Mill appears to do mail order.

Cottage Smallholder said...

That sounds great Joanna! Thanks. We are always running out of bread. This looks fun to make.

Joanna said...

Thanks Aislinn ... I do sometimes get to Borough Market, and I remember seeing an article about Orkney Rose in a colour supplement a little while ago and thinking I should look out for that ...

Well, CS, it's a whole lot easier than jumping in the car and going off to the shops just for a loaf of bread - AND it tastes better!

Anna said...

Mm, sounds good to me! I am always forgetting to put on the bread, too, and I hate buying horrible sliced bread that's always old. (although I use a machine, the wimp's way out!) I also like focaccia - can be made in about 30mins and rested for 1 hr and still turns out okay. Gets me out of a pickle when guests turn up.

Joanna said...

Your foccacia sounds like a good addition ... but for lunch, not breakfast, because of the resting for an hour. Any chance you might post the recipe? I can always adapt it for non-machine cooking?


Allotment Lady said...

oh yes - wonderful for Naan bread - and so easy too. And yes - my store cupboard always has 'interesting' flours.

Great recipes - I just adore your site.

I read your comment - is there really a 'quick' loaf - it's the proving/raising times that make mine slow ones.

Joanna said...

Thanks for kind words ... this is a mutual admiration society, because your site is very inspirational.

Yes, there really is a quick (yeast) loaf, you put the mix into the cold oven as you switch it on, then turn it up after half an hour or so of proving for one hour to cook. Here's the link (it was in the post, for those of you that followed the four links to some of my other breads)

It's worth a try, because busy people always need a few quick tricks up their sleeves ;)


michelle said...

Yeah, I agree with Tanna too - superwoman. Superwoman, for sure!

Sophie said...

Joanna, I'm afraid I have to be really nosey and ask if your all day course in Oxford was cookery related (there doesn't seem to be all that much on around our way)

Kelly Mahoney said...

Cool tips!

Joanna said...

Thanks Kelly

Sophie, as it happens, it wasn't. I know what you mean, although there's a cookery school just outside Henley, the presence of which stopped me from thinking that I would do informal cookery lessons in my own kitchen. Next month I'm going to Bath to Bertinet's for a bread-making course; the paperwork arrived today, and I see they've got a knife skills day course in January, which I think I will enrol on, because I'd like to improve, especially things like filleting fish. Email me if you'd like details of the Henley-ish school (I've never tried it, but I've got the details somewhere!)