Baking Bread in a Pure Clay Pot
After many disappointments in trying to bake that perfect bread at home in different bread pans, we said we were going to try it in our own pans. They were shallow, with walls that open up towards the top making it easy for the bread to come out, and they were the safest cooking medium out there, so why not…?
The results were fantastic! The aroma of the baked bread filled our entire kitchen, and the taste irresistible. Moist on the inside (we never were able to get bread to bake so moist) and brown and crusty on the outside!
Later we did a taste test, like we do with other “types of cooking” when trying them out for the 1st time. We baked 2 loaves of bread, one in MEC and the other in a “popular” brand of bread pan and the taste was nowhere close, nobody wanted the other bread. But MEC bread was gone in 40 minutes, the other one sat for 2 days before some of us “grownups” had to finish it so we didn’t waste the food.
Here’s the recipe we followed to bake the best tasting bread in the MEC pan. You can modify the recipe to your liking (although we’d suggest and note that there is no need for any artificial ingredients, the bread, with just a few natural ingredients turns out fantastic). When following your own recipe, just keep mind to follow the guidelines of cooking in clay and you should be all set.
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 tsp dry active yeast (this type of yeast is less chemically contaminated)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp unrefined cane sugar
- 2 tbsp ghee or butter oil
- 2 tbsp yogurt/curd (vegan or dairy) or 1.5 tbsp vinegar
- some milk (dairy or vegan) for brushing the top of the bread
- Warm 1 or 1.25 cups of water.
- Add 1 tbsp. sugar and dry active yeast.
- Stir and let the yeast activate. This usually takes about 10-12 minutes.
- Add the salt to the flour, mix well.
- Add the proofed yeast mixture, ghee/butter/oil and yogurt.
- Add and mix all ingredients well then knead the dough.
- Add more water if needed. The dough should be slightly sticky.
- Continue to knead, until you get a smooth dough which when stretched doesn’t tear.
- Rub or brush water all over the dough and keep in a covered bowl to leaven for about an hour.
- After an hour remove the dough and punch to deflate it lightly.
- Roll it into a round shape & Tuck the edges down on both sides of the bread loaf.
- Place the bread in your well greased MEC pan with the tucked edges facing downwards.
- Cover your pan and let the dough leaven for 40 minutes. Meanwhile preheat the oven at 220 degrees C for at least 20 minutes.
- Once the bread has risen in the pan, Place it in the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes or until the bread is done.
You can check for doneness with the smell, it should smell toasted & nutty when done and with the “fork check test”. Insert a fork in the center of the bread, and take it out, if it comes out clean your bread is done. Because the bread on the inside is going to be nice and moist (with other pans metal/ceramic the bread get too dry), sometimes the other popular method of testing call the “tapping” method may not be accurate.
Yield1 8″ bread loaf (8 servings)