Aidan Chapman’s October Recipe

The finished product

The finished product

Aidan at work

Aidan at work

Pain de Campagne

My last two recipes were inspired by the wonderful Parisian bakeries! Poilane is the god father of all the bakeries in Paris and makes the most famous bread on the planet.
So this month a beginners recipe for Pan de Campagne,a wonderful french country loaf full of flavour, with a fantastic crust and the trade mark open crumb that makes this loaf a Rolls Royce in the world of bread.
This loaf can be made with a sour starter or a slightly yeasted starter which is the preferred French method. Both varieties give great depth of flavour.

For the starter- 10g of fresh yeast, 200g of organic white flour and 225ml of water
1. Place flour into a bowl
2. Crumble the yeast into the flour.
3. Pour in the water and mix for 5 mins the mixture should be slightly frothy.
4. Cover with cling film and leave to stand for 24 hours.

For the dough- 20g of fresh yeast, 100g wholemeal flour, 100g rye flour, 200g white flour, 450ml of water and a pinch of salt.

1. Take the cling film off the starter, it should be nice and bubbly and have a lovely fermenting alcohol aroma.
2. Add all the flour into the starter.
3. Crumble the yeast onto the flour.
4. Place a pinch of salt into the bowl making sure it does not go near the yeast.
5. Make a well in the center and pour in the water.
6. Gently start to fold in the flour and bring the mixture together.
7. Once a dough begins to form start to knead more vigorously.
8. Continue to mix for 10mins by hand or 6mins by machine.
9. The dough should be nice and elasticated and silk-like to touch.
10. Cover the dough with a slightly damp cloth and leave to rise for 4 hours.
11. Turn on oven gas mark 8 or 220c
12. Your dough should have doubled in size now
13. Turn dough out on to a table and gently knock it back, then cover for another 10mins.
14. This recipe will make one large loaf
15. Start to mould your loaf make it as round as you can ensuring it has a nice smooth top and a seam at the bottom.
16. Line a round container with a tea towel and dust with plenty of flour, then place your dough in seam side up.
17. Leave to prove for 1 hour
18. Dust a thin baking tray with semolina and gently turn your loaf onto the tray seam side down.
19. With a sharp knife slash the top of the loaf with four lines one way and another four slashes to create a checkered pattern.
20. Place in the oven and with a water spray spritz the side of the oven to create some steam.
21. Leave to bake for 35-40mins, when you take the bread out tap the bottom of the loaf if its ready it will sound hollow if not bake for a bit longer.
As a baker one thing you never tire of is the smell of freshly baked bread and I promise you that this loaf will not disappoint. When you take it out of the oven make sure no one else is around, savour the smell and get the butter ready,but don’t blame me if you get indigestion!!!!

If you have trouble making this recipe click on to www.phoenixbakery.co.uk and look for our baking school that is opening next January. Book a place now as spaces are going fast!! We will also be doing cake making, pastry making and offering apprentice days!


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