Search Results for: bread

Flatbreads – 5p each (Cooking on a Bootstrap)

Cooking on a Bootstrap‘s recipe no. 2 is a beautifully simple recipe which makes eight flatbreads in well under an hour. So far have used them to dip in soup, with a bit of jam inside and as mini pizzas. All in (including electricity and washing-up costs), they come to 5p each.

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  • 3 cups of flour, 1 cup of milk, teaspoon each of dried yeast, sugar and oil, and a pinch of salt.

First, warm the milk slightly in the microwave and stir in the yeast and sugar. Put the flour in a marge bowl with the salt, pour the milk mixture in and stir it all together to make a dough.

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Knead the dough for 10 minutes – if it’s too sticky, add more flour, if it’s too firm, add splashes of milk and knead it in. There’s a lot of flexibility in this recipe because of the way the flatbreads are cooked, so don’t worry too much about precise quantities or measurements. Let it rise with a tea-towel over for half-an-hour in a warm spot, then cut it in to eight pieces.

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Roll each piece flat, to about 3mm thickness and whack them in an oven at 200°C. About 10 minutes later they’re done. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn, just go a bit golden-brown on top.

A couple split in half and turned into mini pizzas with a few Tesco salami slices and bit of cheese, with plus a cup of tea or coffee, makes a meal for 30p.

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Greek Tomato and Feta Bread (65p)

Another Greek recipe from Giota Nikolau at faghta-giagias.blogspot.com, this one a more-or-less direct copy. It is a simple bread recipe with olive oil added, plus sun-dried tomato and feta cheese. Using the tomato and feta did ramp the price up a bit, but cheaper alternatives could be found. The dough had to rise three times, so adding cooking time to this, it is not a quick one to prepare, but the results are very satisfying.

Ingredients:

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  • 250g plain wholemeal flour.
  • 250g plain white flour.
  • 1 heaped teaspoon dried yeast.
  • 1 flat desert spoon sugar.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (normal or extra-virgin).
  • Pinch of salt.
  • 100ml luke warm milk.
  • 200ml (teacup) warm water.
  • Handful of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped fine.
  • 80g feta cheese crumbled into small pieces.

How to make it:

Into a one bowl I put the yeast, half the luke warm water, the sugar and about 3 tablespoons of flour, mixing it to the consistency of porridge. Covered with a dry cloth and left aside of 15 minutes. The purpose of this is to wake the yeast up (‘activating’ the yeast).

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I put the rest of the flour and salt into another bowl and mixed it all together, then added the olive oil and yeast ‘porridge’ – I found using a simple metal desert spoon best to mix things together. Kept adding splashes of the warm water until it was a firm dough. (If it gets too sticky, sprinkle in more flour.) Kneaded this for 10 minutes, then left it in an olive-oil-greased bowl (stops it sticking to the sides) in a warm spot for 60 minutes to rise.

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Divided into 4 pieces and rolled these into mini-baguette shapes each with a groove into which I dropped the tomato and feta filling, pressing it into the dough. Pinch the tops together and kneaded each roll for a couple of minutes.

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After this, set them aside for a further 60 minutes to re-rise, then baked in the oven at 200°C for 30 minutes.

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Cost:

Something like 50p a roll. Toasted, buttered, and with a sliced tomato or cheese on top (and not forgetting electricity and washing-up costs), a meal for around 65p.

As a Greek-style bread recipe (i.e. with the olive oil, but no tomato/feta filling), would be 15p a roll.

Bread – 46p a loaf

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Trying different bread recipes, flours and timings in the oven, found one that works for me.

  • 500 g strong white flour – 32p
  • 15 g butter – 3p
  • 7 g dried yeast – 7p
  • teaspoon of sugar – 1p
  • flat teaspoon of salt – 0.2p
  • 300 ml warm water.

I mix the flour, sugar, salt and yeast, and rub in the butter, then gradually add the water, stirring it in with a teaspoon as bigger spoons get too clogged up, until the mix is thick enough to knead. Knead for 10 minutes, put it in a greased 5 x 9 inch (13 x 23 cm) bread tin and pop it on a shelf directly above the storage heater for an hour, so that the mixture rises well, doubling in size.

Into the oven at 220°C for 15 minutes (I don’t ‘preheat’ it, seems a waste of electricity to me) and 180°C for another 15, spinning it round halfway so it bakes evenly. Cools an hour before attempting to cut or eat it. Getting to know one’s oven is important. If the first attempts are under- or over-cooked, add or subtract 5 minutes

Total cost: including oven time and hot water/washing up liquid used when tidying up, something like 46p a loaf. Half the price of and tastier and more filling than a supermarket loaf.

Chicken Yassa (£1.50)

Yassa is a spicy chicken dish from Senegal, made with onions, spices and seasoning. In spite of the large quantity of onion, it doesn’t taste oniony at all. More complex versions of this recipe exist, adding different spices, vinegar or other ingredients. I deliberately kept mine as simple a possible.

I went a bit over-the top quantity-wise with this, making enough to feed a family of six. For just one or two people, divide the quantities below by three.

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Ingredients (serves six)

  • 6 breast fillets (or equivalent amount of meat).
  • Three onions, red or green, finely chopped or sliced.
  • Juice of three lemons.
  • 1 cup (½-a-mug) of ground-nut (peanut) or olive oil.
  • 1 well-heaped desert spoon of Dijon mustard.
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
  • 1 Habanero chili, seeds removed, finely chopped (optional) – or some suitable alternative like powdered or bottled hot chili.
  • Soy sauce (optional).

WEAR DISPOSABLE GLOVES when de-seeding and fine-chopping the Habanero chili. It is very hot, and might make your fingers sting. Absolutely do not put your fingers anywhere near your eyes, in your ear, up your nose or anywhere else tender while chopping. You’ll soon regret it. Wondering just how hot these raw chilies were, I cut one in half and licked the end. It was like licking the end of a cattle-prod. The finished dish is not particularly hot, just has that extra tang. but if you’re really not a fan of chili, leave it out, and add soy sauce for some extra flavour instead.

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Method

Chop the chicken into small chunks or thin slices and put this in a large mixing bowl. To the bowl add the onion, lemon juice, oil, mustard, cayenne pepper and chili, and stir everything together. I also added a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce, although this is not strictly necessary and depends on personal taste.

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This needs to marinate for half-a-day, so best to do the preparation in the evening and leave it in the fridge overnight, ready to cook the next day.

The customary way to cook this is to fry it on a hot plate – a hot frying pan will do just as well – until the onion is well softened and caramelised and the chicken just starting to brown.

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Serve immediately with mashed potato, some yam or sweet potato mash, rice, or anything really. I microwaved a can of red kidney beans (rinse the goo off them first and put in a ceramic dish to microwave) which went very well. It would also go well with the flatbreads from my previous post.

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Can be kept in the fridge or even frozen, I suppose, but this is a food best served freshly cooked. Everything considered, come out at about £1.50 a meal.


 

Cooking on a Bootstrap – Basic White Loaf – 40p a loaf.

COOB - 1A.jpgBack to the real spirit of the blog: good food on a very tight budget. Obtained a copy of Jack Monroe’s new book, Cooking on a Bootstrap, and started with recipe no. 1: “basic white” bread. The recipe is as simple as one can get, even simpler and cheaper than my previous bread post.


Cooking on a Bootstrap – Basic White Loaf

Ingredients:

  • 400 g plain white flour.
  • 1½ level teaspoons dried yeast.
  • Pinch of salt.
  • 250 ml warm water.
  • Teaspoon of oil.

What to do:

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Mix the flour, year and salt together in a large mixing bowl. Add the water, stirring everything together to make a dough.

Knead the dough for 10 minutes. Jack suggests rubbing a teaspoon of oil onto the palms of your hands first, and it does work well, stopping the fresh dough sticking to you.

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Let the dough rise under a tea-towel for 1 hour, then into the over at 180°C for 40 minutes.

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The result is an uncomplicated plain white loaf, which, including electricity and washing-up, cost about 40p a loaf using a mini-oven, or 4 pence per thick slice. (Baking it in a large, high wattage oven would, of course, raise the cost by 10p or more.)

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