Sunday, 10 February 2013

Chocolate teabread

There won't be many sweetened breads on this blog - and there will be none with fruit. Dan's sweet tooth never grew in and, as far as he's concerned, fruit is the work of the devil. What can I say, he's a savoury kind of guy. ('Not all fruits,' he's just said. 'All fruits except bananas and grapes. Although not all bananas. I don't like them when they're bruised.) Anyhow ... chocolate is an interesting beast because it satisfies both sweet and savoury, and Daniel absolutely adores it. So, the need for a chocolate bread was inevitable.

The finished loaf 
(flour not icing sugar on top - terrible light, bad camera; hey ho)

I based this recipe on a milk loaf because I thought it would provide a nice rounded, slightly sweet background for the dark chocolate. A milk loaf replaces water in the dough with milk, and is good with a bit of added sugar. Here's the teabread recipe.

470g strong white bread flour
30g cocoa powder
30g butter, softened
10g fast-action yeast
10g salt
25g caster sugar
320ml semi-skimmed milk, tepid
125g chocolate, roughly chopped - either all dark (not the really heavy stuff, just 35% cocoa solids - Bourneville the best for this) or equal proportions of dark, milk and white

Shaped dough ready to prove
Make the dough using the same method as for basic white bread, adding the cocoa powder with the flour; the sugar with the salt on one side of the bowl; and incorporating the warm milk a little at a time at the end. As ever, you may not need it all or you may need a little more to get the right slightly grainy and just-a-bit-moist feeling. Knead the dough in the usual way (see film) and set aside for two hours.

Spread the chopped chocolate on a flat surface and, once you've punched the air out of the dough, knead it in until all the chunks are fully incorporated. Some bits may keep falling off, but if you stick them on and they will be engulfed by the dough as it proves. Leave it to do so for an hour, flouring and slashing the dough after half an hour, as usual, and turning on the oven to 200C (400F, gas 6).

Completely, utterly delicious. In fact, I think Dan could have done with three thumbs for this. It's like a bready cross between chocolate cake and pain au chocolat, but with far less of the fat and sugar.

Dan's Thumbometer- double yum
Dan liked it with butter and Marmite(!). I liked it toasted (NOT in the toaster) and eaten hot with lots of butter. It's called 'teabread' because the combination of toasted sweetish bread with salty butter reminded me of a toasted English teacake.

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