Cranberry Walnut Bread I’ve been carrying my own food on plane trips for years now but my husband usually prefers to eat what’s given on the plane. HOWEVER, now that one has the privilege of paying for such dreadful stuff, I’d have to be plain crazy not to bring my own and Elliott is now amenable to the idea. So two days before departing for our annual ski vacation in Deer Valley, I started the cranberry walnut bread destined to be filled with cold roast chicken for the trip. (brownies for dessert). Since I baked it the day before, we already consumed about a third of it before making the sandwiches. The rest will be divided between breakfast before departure and the freezer for our return.
This seemed like an excellent opportunity for a step-by-step bread lesson so instead of packing in a timely way, and not waiting til the last minute, I photographed all the different stages of the bread. For those of you who have the Bread Bible, you will already have the recipe. As you will see from the photos, I mixed it in the bread machine this time. I made half the recipe (which baked in the same time) though I would recommend tenting it with foil after the first 30 minutes of baking and using a cushioned baking sheet or double baking sheets as this bread tends to brown readily.
The only thing I did that was different was to add 75 grams (2.6 ounces—a scant 1/4 cup) of stiff starter that I keep in the freezer to add to dough to give it extra flavor and extend its shelf-life. If you do this, defrost it and add it torn in pieces to the water mixture. Also add an extra 1/8 teaspoon of salt to balance the extra flour in the starter. Anyone who doesn’t have the Bread Bible and wants to make this recipe let me know and I’ll post it on the blog on my return.
Sponge Peaking Through Flour Blanket After 1-1/2 Hour
Initial Mixing of the Dough Dough after the 20 Minute Autolyse
Dough Kneaded 7 Minutes
Soaked Cranberries Spread on the Rolled Dough
Cranberries Kneaded into the Dough
Dough Doubled, Risen 1-1/2 Hours
Shaped Dough with Hot Water in Container in Background to be Covered
with Plastic Proof Box
Dough Fully Risen and Slashed, Ready to Bake
The Baked Bread
Slices of the Bread
Note: The crunch of the walnuts and tart moistness of the cranberries were fantastic with the sliced chicken breast and a light gilding of mayonnaise.