Walnut bread for starters.
French Pain Aux Noix
350g wholemeal flour
115g plain flour
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
15ml dried active yeast
275 lukewarm milk
175g walnut pieces
Preheat oven to 220°C.
Add the sugar to the dried yeast and pour over some of the warmed milk, use when about 2 cm of foam has formed.
Start the butter melting in a pan.
Mix the flours and salt into a bowl and make a well.
Pour in the yeast and the remainder of the milk, pour in the butter through a sieve then mix together by hand to form a moist dough.
Knead for a few minutes then leave to rise for an hour in a warm place in a covered oiled bowl.
Once risen gently knock back onto a floured surface, then press the dough out flat with the heel of your hand. Sprinkle over the chopped walnuts and press lightly into the dough, then roll up. Leave to rise again for another 30 minutes.
The traditional way to bake this bread is to make two separate balls, but I perfer it as one longer loaf. When it has the shape you want leave it to rise for another 45 minutes.
Place the dough roll onto a baking tray and bake in the centre of the oven for 35 minutes. If making ball loaves slash the tops, but when I make the longer roll I just leave the wrapped over edge on the top.
Leave to cool on a wire rack.
This bread is particularly wonderful with cheese -walnuts and a soft St Nectaire cheese are a match made in heaven - particularly when eaten on the sofa in front of Star Trek Generations.