Betty from Allouez, WI (2018 Week 2: Bread)




Allouez, WI

Baking Challenge

Eight-Strand Plaited Loaf

Give your bread a name and tell us about your recipe.

Cherry-Chive-Lemon Twist Breads. (8 strand plaits that twist and cross – like lace making!)
Although basic yeast bread recipes are similar, to be true to my interest in historic recipes, I used one from my 1901 copyrighted Presidential cookbook called “Twist Bread”. I cross referenced to Paul Hollywood’s British Baking Show recipe to help with the plaiting. And instead of using milk to brush over the loaf as per the Twist recipe, I took Hollywood’s suggestion of using an egg wash. The additions to the dough of dried cherries, fresh chives and preserved lemon were my own.

Would you describe yourself as a rogue baker, or do you strictly adhere to the recipe?

Indeed, I am a rogue baker. I often find something creative in a project and will run with it to see what the results might be. For this challenge, the word “twist” brought to mind bobbin lace making that I have tried to teach myself to do. Plaiting dough is a similar activity though obviously not as fine and intricate. In bobbin lace making the rudimentary moves are crosses and twists. In order to practice my eight-strand plait, I pulled out my bobbin lace learners kit and set up eight bobbins with colored threads so that I could see the pattern I would be making in the dough. The actual result in my loaf isn’t real apparent, perhaps due to my dough strands stretching out and being sticky in the heat of the day. Once I stopped handling them they melded into one another more than I had wished. For the flatter bread I pretended I was actually working a bobbin lace but rather than pulling tight on the twists and crosses, I allowed the dough to lay open to give a lacy appearance. I sprinkled large grained salt over this one.

Tell us about how you added a Wisconsin twist to your bread creation.

My Wisconsin twist (that word again) was to add some flavorful ingredients to the dough. The dried cherries were Cherry De-Lite Montmorency Tart Cherries from Country Ovens, Ltd in Forestville, WI. The fresh chives were from my backyard garden. The preserved lemon was canned by my daughter last fall. As the lemons are preserved in salt, stick cinnamon and bay leaf, it added a unique flavor to this bread and is a tasty accompaniment to main dish and salad. Next time I would add even more. By the way, their three colors red, green, and yellow also coincidentally share some colors of a couple Wisconsin sport teams we all know.

How did you do?

Pleasantly satisfied.