Recipes for rye bread and preserved cumquats

First, here’s the recipe for the rye bread.

I’m very pleased with it I have to say. I cut the loaf in half while it was still hot, so the texture doesn’t look great but really it’s fine now it’s cooled. We just couldn’t wait to make it into a sandwich for our lunch. It was mighty good simply with leftover roast pork and piccalilli, plus tomato and camembert. Robert moved on to bread with a Tasmanian honey, which he said was sensational. Certainly this bread is worth a try.

Rye Bread with Spelt

1 cup rye flour
1 cup spelt
2 cups plain flour
4 teaspoons dried yeast
2 teaspoons salt
¼ cup olive oil
1 egg, lightly whisked
3 teaspoons molasses
½ cup boiling water
½ cup water
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
½ cup yoghurt

Mix together the flours, yeast and salt and then make a well in the centre. Pour in the oil and egg.

Dissolve the molasses in the boiling water, then mix with the cooler water to make a lukewarm liquid. Pour into the well, along with the vinegar and yoghurt (if the mixture is a bit dry, add an extra couple of tablespoons of warm water.

Mix well, then cover with a tea towel and allow to rise until about doubled (approximately one hour, though may take more).

Grease a large bread tin.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface, sprinkle with flour and then knead until smooth. Cut into 2 equal portions and shape each into a ball. Place side by side in prepared tin.

Allow to rise almost to the top of the tin and then bake at 200 degrees C (fan forced) for 40 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

And now, here’s the recipe for the preserved cumquats (photo in my earlier post). You will notice that they are not candied per se, a process by which more sugar is added to the syrup every day or so and then the cumquats returned to the mixture to steep. I prefer them to be not so sweet and besides, this method is quicker.

It does mean that they don’t keep so long of course, but if they are kept in the fridge, all should be well for at least 3 weeks. Otherwise you could waterbath them (like, Fowlers method) and they will keep longer. In that case, bring slowly up to 85 degrees C over 50 minutes, then hold at this temperature for one hour. The cumquats will then keep indefinitely.

By the way, the reason I discard the water from the initial boiling is that I find it takes away some of that unpleasant ‘pithiness’ that goes with citrus fruits.

Preserved Cumquats

500g cumquats
650g sugar
250ml water

Prick the cumquats, barely cover with boiling water and gently simmer for 15 minutes. Drain.

Place the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring. Add cumquats and cook very gently for 20 minutes. Allow to cool in the syrup. Spoon into jars and seal immediately. If the cumquats tend to float on the surface, crumple a piece of baking peer and press into the top of the jar – that will keep them submerged, essential if they are not to spoil.

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