Fermented Hot Sauce Mk II

20150420_085424Well looky here, if it’s not another batch of hot sauce.

I’m not going to spend too much time on this one, as I’ve kind of laboured the process in this post: https://yeastismybitch.com/2015/02/05/lactobacillus-and-others-fermented-hot-sauce/ and tasted it here: https://yeastismybitch.com/2015/04/09/lactobacillus-and-others-fermented-hot-sauce-tasting-notes/

So.  This time I used a whole pack of Scotch Bonnets and two or three packs of normal “red chilli peppers” from Sainsburys.  I didn’t put as much water in only added a clove garlic and a whole red bell pepper, and used a little more salt.

The whole thing fermented (and developed an amusing white mould/pellicle/whatever it was – that I scraped off and discarded) and generally did it’s stuff over a period of a month or so.

When the whole lot was starting to look more liquid-ey, I annihilated it in a blender until it was smooth, then strained it (lightly pushing it through the sieve) into a small pan and then briskly boiled it for a couple of minutes.

After that I let it out with a third the volume of spirit vinegar and bottled it up.

Funnily enough, this time around, it doesn’t separate or anything.  It’s a lot hotter, too, and tastes that little bit more Tabasco-authentic.  Nice.

FOOTNOTE: Between this batch and the last one, I learnt why certain things had to happen:

  • The salt prevents any bad stuff (mould, nasty bacteria) from taking hold
  • The lactic fermentation acidifies the sauce to a PH below 3 or 4 or so and this means that it can be kept out of the fridge as nasties can’t survive in such an acidic environment
  • The Vinegar is a bit of crutch to ensure the low PH is achieved.

Maybe before next time I’ll invest in some PH test strips or something – that might help with my all-grain mashing too…

Orange Glow Oaty bread

As is the tradition these days, I’m handing over to Eve to give you another of her bread recipes.  I took the liberty of calling the recipe Orange Glow Oaty Bread a) because it’s my blog  and b) because I’m old enough to remember the Ready Brek adverts of the early eighties!

Ingredients

650ml warm water

30g warmed, soft butter
2tbsp sugar
150g Ready Brek or instant oats
850g white bread flour
2 x (7g) sachets of quick yeast
3 tsp salt
Olive oil, about 20ml in total (10ml for the dough and 10ml for oiling the work surface to prevent sticking)

Method

Add all ingredients to the mixer bowl in the order above, without mixing yet – and also keeping back the oil for a later stage, ensuring that the yeast and the salt are kept apart on different sides of the bowl.

Because all of the ingredients are layered in the bowl – with the water at the bottom and the yeast not getting wet and activated yet – I have found that you can leave it to sit for a couple of hours or so, allowing you to put children to bed/feed the baby/walk the dog, etc.

It also allows time for the warm water to soak into the oats.

Note: If you do decide to leave it to soak for a bit you might need to add a touch more water when at the kneading stage later on…

Using the dough hook, mix on speed 1 for about 3 minutes, stopping every now and then to scrape the dough off the dough hook.

If it looks dry add more water, if a bit wet add more flour.

When the dough, is smooth and elastic and starts to sticks to the dough hook, it should be about right.

Remove the bowl from the mixer, and pour a bit of olive oil (a further 10ml) over the dough whilst scraping down the sides of the mixer bowl with a rubber spatula.  If you can, try and coat the entire dough ball in oil, which will prevent it drying out.

Cover the mixer bowl with a plastic disposable shower cap and put it somewhere warm for at least an hour until the dough doubles in size.  The dough may be a bit slower than normal to rise as the Ready Brek is lower in gluten than the white bread flour, so it slows down the rising process a little.

My dough takes about an hour in the boiler cupboard.  Your mileage will vary…

Oil the work surface and your hands then tip the dough out of the bowl and divide into two.

Flatten each lump of dough into a rectangle and roll it up into a Swiss roll shape – being sure to tuck the ends of the dough underneath.

Place each rolled loaf into a oiled bread tin, inside an upside down carrier bag and put it in a warm place for the second prove.

It took my dough about 35 mins to rise the second time. So, pop the oven on to 200C (fan oven) about 20 minutes into the second prove.

When fully risen, remove from the bags, slash the top of the loaves lengthways and place in to the oven gently, cook for 30 minutes or until the top has a nice nut brown colour and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

When cooked, remove from the tins and allow to cool down on a wire rack.

Enjoy the lovely moist texture and subtle oaty flavour of the loaf.

Homemade Belgian Waffles

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See how the yeast works.  That’s what I’m talking about

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The finished article…

These last couple of reviews have been mining a rich seam of all things Belgian, so on that theme we’ll once again hand over to my wife for her take on Belgian Waffles.  Yum…

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

325ml milk, lukewarm
60g butter, melted plus extra for greasing.
2 -3 tablespoons maple syrup
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
260g bread flour 
1x 7g packet of dried baker’s yeast

Directions:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl, making sure that the bowl is big enough – the mixture will increase in size as the yeast goes to work
  2. Stir to combine the ingredients.  It’s OK if the mixture isn’t perfectly smooth
  3. Cover the bowl with clingfilm, or as we do: use a cheap disposable plastic shower cap
  4. Let the mixture rest at room temperature for an hour – the mixture will begin to bubble as the yeast works
  5. After an hour the mixture is ready to use, or you can refrigerate it overnight to let the flavour develop and cook the waffles the following morning
  6. Now preheat your waffle iron. Spray with non-stick vegetable oil spray, or using a pastry brush, smear on melted butter and pour a ladle of batter (or the amount recommended by the manufacturer) onto the center of the iron. Close the lid and bake for the recommended amount of time or until the waffle is golden brown and steam has stopped pouring out of the iron. Our iron takes about 5 to 6 minutes per waffle
  7. Serve immediately, or keep them warm in the oven

Serve with one or a combination of the following: maple syrup, fresh berries, fruit compote, hot chocolate ganache, whipped cream or ice cream…depending on the time of day and how decadent you are feeling.

Eve’s Fruit Bread in a Kenwood Mixer

20131031_070741I’m going to take a little break from writing this next piece, as it was supplied in whole by Eve, my wife.  (I can’t ever say “my wife” without feeling a bit like a bad 70’s comic telling a joke – a la Monkhouse, Dawson, etc…)

I had a couple of slices of this for my breakfast, this morning and it was spot on.

 Eve’s Fruit Bread

Warm 620ml full fat milk in microwave for 60 seconds

Stir in 2 tablespoons of muscovado sugar and pour into mixer bowl

Add 2x 7 gram packets of yeast,

Add 1kg white bread flour, 3 teaspoons of salt and 2 free range eggs.

Beat in the mixer at speed setting 1 until all is incorporated,then reduce down to the “min” setting – until the dough looks smooth, which will take approx 4 minutes or so.

Stop the mixer and scrape the dough off the hook every now and then with a RUBBER spatula, if the dough hook should get all clogged up.

You want a fairly wet dough, as the fruit added later will absorb some of the moisture.  If the mixture looks very wet, add more flour; if too dry, add more milk.

Don’t add your fruit yet, as this will slow down the rise during the prove

Remove bowl from the mixer and cover with a disposable plastic shower cap for an hour or so at normal room temperature, until the dough has doubled in size

Turn out the dough onto a oiled work top and flatten out into a rough rectangle, sprinkle a handful of dried fruit over the dough rectangle then fold into 3, cut dough in half, add more fruit and place one half on top of the other, repeat 4 times. I tend to use about 250g of fruit.

Finally, cut dough in half, then flatten each half into a  rectangle and roll up the dough into a sausage shape, tuck the ends in.

Pop each of them into a 500g loaf tin. Being sure to pick off any fruit from the top of each loaf as it will burn in the oven.

Cover the tins with an upside down clean carrier bag and let the dough prove in a warm place for 1/2 hr to 45 minutes. 

Meanwhile Turn on the oven to 200c and pop a roasting tin in the bottom of the oven.

When the oven is hot and the bread is risen and ready to bake, remove the plastic bags, brush the loaf tops with milk (to give a dark golden brown top) and gently slash the tops with a sharp bread knife and gently place in the oven

Pour a cup of water into the roasting tin and shut the door quickly and gently.

Set timer for 1/2 hour.

When baked and sounding hollow when tapped, remove from oven, pick off any burnt fruit (!!) and leave to cool on wire racks.

Eat with lots of butter.

Tip. If using a fan oven, turn the oven off before opening the door otherwise all the lovely steam and heat will be blown out by the fan.