Sue’s AGA Bread
Makes 1 loaf
- 3.5 cups of Plain Flour
- 1 sachet (7-8g) of Dried Yeast
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 teaspoon Sugar
- 1 tsp Bread Improver (available from supermarket)
- 350ml very warm Water (not hot)
1. Place flour, sugar, salt and yeast into a large mixing bowl. Mix with fingers.
2. Add warm water and mix ingredients into a sticky, rough dough.
3. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead for 10 mins. If dough is sticking to hands, have a little mound of flour next to where you are kneading and just place you hand (palm down) onto the flour and continue to knead. The dough should be soft and just ‘dry’ enough not to stick to your hands when you knead. If it is too dry, the bread will be too dense and will not rise. After 10 minutes, it should be smooth and elastic.
4. Lightly oil a clean large mixing bowl with olive oil and place the well kneaded ball of dough in the bowl. Cover with cling film or a plastic bag with no holes, and leave in a warm place for 40 minutes, or until the dough at least doubles in size.
5. Lightly oil a large AGA bread tin with olive oil and leave the tin in the same warm place as the above.
6. Turn the dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface and with the palm of your hand, ‘whack’ the dough into a long rectangular shape (you can be quite hard doing this!). Do not knead. Turn the flattened dough over and do the same to the other side. The dough should be about 1.5cm thick and about 40cm long x 25cm wide (approx) – a rectangular shape.
7. Starting from the short end of the rectangle, roll up the dough (not tightly) like a swiss roll. Tuck each end of the roll underneath, to ‘seal’ the ends and lightly shape into a small loaf.
8. Place the dough into the centre of the warm bread tin, cover with a plastic bag with no holes (not tight over the top of the tin, so the dough has space to rise, without sticking to the plastic bag) and leave in the warm place for 40 minutes. The dough should expand enough in this time to fill the tin and rise above the side edges.
9. Place bread tin in the preheated Roasting Oven of an AGA, with the wire rack placed on the floor of the oven. Bake for 20 minutes.
- Replace all plain flour with half plain/half wholemeal for a light wholemeal
- Replace all plain flour with half plain/half rye for a light rye
- Use only 3 cups of flour and add a cup of sultanas, a cup of dried cranberries, and a cup of chopped dried apricots and a teaspoon of cinnamon, for a delicious fruit loaf
Adjust the amount of water for all of the above variations, so the dough if just dry enough not to stick to your hands when kneading. Wholemeal and rye flours will need additional water, fruit loaf may need less.