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Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Baking A Carrot & Poppy Seed Ring

I was experimenting with healthier variations for breads when it suddenly dawned on me that I was attempting to reinvent the wheel. Cakes had already paved the way! There are few cakes as delicious as a carrot cake. Why not take from this, leave out the sweets, swap the flours and bake a bread. I experimented a little with this idea and the recipe I share today is the result. I added some poppy seeds for subtle flavour, but mostly for visual appeal. Those black seeds against the golden backdrop makes one salivate!


Grate 3 large carrots very finely. You will need 2 cups (500 ml) of finely grated carrots for the recipe.


In a large mixing bowl, measure 2 cups (500 ml) brown bread flour, 2 cups (500 ml) white bread flour, 2 tablespoons (25 ml) poppy seeds, 1 tablespoon (12,5 ml) sugar and 2 teaspoons (10 ml) salt.


Mix the dry ingredients well.
Option 1: If using Instant Yeast, rather than the sourdough starter, add a packet to the dry ingredients.


Add 2 cups (500 ml) finely grated carrots to the dry ingredients. Mix this very well!


Add 1/2 cup (125 ml) lukewarm milk, 50 ml cooking oil, 1 cup (250 ml) sourdough starter and 2 eggs to the mixing bowl. We use a second egg for this recipe as the carrots has no adhesive qualities and the added egg need to make up for this fact. We do not want a bread that crumbles as we cut into it!
Option 2: If using Active Dry Yeast, instead of the sourdough starter, allow the yeast to froth up in a cup (250 ml) of lukewarm milk and the sugar.


Bring the dough together.


Knead for roughly 10 minutes on a lightly floured surface.


Prepare a bunt tin with non-stick spray and lightly flour the bottom.


Roll the dough into a solid tube.


Place the dough tube inside the ring.


Cover with plastic and allow to rise in a warm dry place.


Once risen, brush with egg.


Sprinkle some more poppy seeds on top.


Bake in a preheated oven at 200 °C for about 40 minutes.


Allow to cool on a wire rack.


Serve hot. This bread is absolutely delicious as is, but carries sweet or savoury toppings with equal success. We had it with mince and cheese straight from the oven and it was gorgeous. When the youngsters came over for a visit a short while later, they enjoyed it with peanut butter and syrup. I tried it. It's fab!


Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy the books here:
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