Easy Little Bread

Easy Little Bread Recipe

Right this second I'm eating a slice of butter-slathered homemade bread. And quite frankly, it's the least interesting looking bread you've ever set eyes on. But at this particular moment, there isn't anything on this earth that would taste better. I'm convinced of it. It reminds me of the bread my dad would sometimes bake for us as kids. A dead simple yeast bread recipe made from ingredients I can nearly guarantee you have on hand. My dad's bread was made using all-purpose white flour, whereas this bread is made with a white, wheat, rolled oat blend. I've baked it three times this week, after I came across the recipe for it in a beautiful, heartfelt cookbook by Natalie Oldfield.

Easy Little Bread Recipe

I snapped a few shots of the book to give you a sense of it. Super cute, right? I love the grids of vintage family pictures, and the soft color palette of the recipe pages. Really well done. It's a collection recipes inspired by the notebooks of Dulcie May Booker, written by her granddaughter Natalie. It was published in New Zealand, then Australia and the UK. I stumbled on my copy of it the other day at Omnivore Books here in SF, although I don't think it's been published in the U.S. yet. The recipes are classic and no-fuss. The kind that can and (clearly) have been whipped up a hundred times over - scones, fruit pies, chocolate cake, lemon bars, shortbread, and a selection of savory dishes as well.

Easy Little Bread Recipe

So, to all of you who embraced the soda bread recipe, yet still shy away from yeast-based recipes - you've got to try this one. You can have the dough in the pan in 5-10 minutes. It sits around for 30 minutes while I'm in the shower, then straight into the oven. Thank you Gran & Natalie. It's a beautiful book.

Easy Little Bread Recipe

1 1/4 cups / 300 ml warm water (105-115F)
2 teaspoons active dry yeast (one packet)
1 tablespoon runny honey
1 cup / 4.5 oz / 125 g unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup / 5 oz / 140 g whole wheat flour
1 cup / 3.5 oz / 100 g rolled oats (not instant oats)
1 1/2 teaspoons fine grain sea salt
2 tablespoons butter, melted, for brushing

In a medium bowl, sprinkle the yeast onto the warm water and stir until the yeast dissolves. Stir in the honey and set aside for a few minutes, until the yeast blooms and swells a bit - 5 - 10 minutes.

In the meantime, mix the flours, oats, and salt in a large bowl. Add the wet mixture to the dry and stir very well.

Brush a 8-cup loaf pan generously with some of the melted butter. Turn the dough into the tin, cover with a clean, slightly damp cloth, and set in a warm place for 30 minutes, to rise.

Preheat the oven to 350F / 180C, with a rack in the middle. When ready, bake the bread for 35-40 minutes, until golden and pulling away from the sides of the pan. I finish things up by leaving the bread under the broiler for just a heartbeat - to give the top a bit deeper color. Remove from oven, and turn the bread out of the pan quickly. Let it cool on a rack so it doesn't steam in the pan. Serve warm, slathered with butter.

Makes 1 loaf.

Adapted from Gran's Kitchen: Recipes from the Notebooks of Dulcie May Booker.

Prep time: 10 minutes - Cook time: 35 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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  • I'm always on the lookout for good quick bread recipes that don't compromise on flavour and texture - and I love your soda bread - so this looks like one to try!

  • I love simple bread recipes! I made a cilantro scallion bread last week and since then, i've been craving a good bread recipe. also, i totally need to check out omnivore now that i'm settled in!

    heather @ chiknpastry
  • My mother always made bread when we were kids and I used pretty much this method. I make bread like this as well (minus the honey) and it turns out well every time, I use different types of flour, sometimes, wholemeal, sometimes just white. Whenever I try a more complicated recipe it doesn't work out!

  • I am definitely going to make this Heidi. The cookbook sounds delightful. Thank you!

    Linda Sheehan
  • i'm very intimidated by yeast but this looks do-able! plus honey...if you add the words "honey" to anything i'll eat it.

    lynn @ the actor's diet
  • It's not often that I make bread at home. I used to (still!?) have a bread maker which may be in my basement somewhere... But this...this I can do. Looks so easy! I just made an herb butter that I would love to smother all over this.

  • Oh Heidi! Darn you, I just went and bought that cookbook because it looks so darn good in your post. This makes my 250th cookbook...I've been making your recipes, both from Super Natural Every Day and your blog, a lot lately - and I absolutely love them. Each one I try is fabulous and I've been able to adapt them for the vegetables I have on hand with delicious success. I will be making this bread this week and I might make your corn soup again (from a previous post) to go with it. Thank you so much for educating and inspiring.
    HS: Thanks Dana :)

  • Is it okay to use instant yeast?
    HS: I haven't tried it, but if I were going to use instant yeast, I'd likely scale back on the amount a bit and add it straight to the dry ingredients. Probably less rise time...in both cases. Oh, and bump up the temp of the water - 120 or so. Please report back if you try it!

  • What a great story and you managed to make the bread look both interesting and delicious with your photo - my mouth is watering! Can't wait to try this.

  • I hate that my oven is broken because this is exactly what I want this weekend. The book looks great too - I hope they release it here at some point.

    Hungry Sofia
  • I am totally making this bread. It seems so simple, that I'm already thinking of variations! Carrot and rye, basil and tomato, sweet chai spice bread?mmm...thank you!

    Laura M
  • This Grandma can hardly wait to make "Easy Little Bread" with my own grandkids. I am sure they will top it with pb! Thank you!
    HS: It makes great toast Dorothy! They'll love it :)

  • eLLO! That recipe looks to DIE FOR! I'm afraid I may be too impatient to bake it. Is there any possible substitute for a G-ma recipe?

  • We all love simple and we all love bread, so this is a winner. I do a very similar one with oats and seeds with one rise, but have been to lazy to write it up. Crumbs, you beat me to it! Btw, it's beautiful as is - bread always is.

  • Can't wait to make this bread! AND - can't wait to put together a cookbook like this for my family! Just got a MacBook Pro, and I bet I could do it! Thanks for the idea.

  • Ha, I just made bread yesterday! Clearly, it is bread o'clock around the internets :-P I'll have to try this one next!

  • I love how quickly this yeast bread comes together and that it even has oats in it. Yum! Can't wait to try it.

  • You're such an inspiration. This post is just so lovely. Food memory is something that is so deep and so pure for me. This cookbook looks darling. I'm really hoping to carve out some time this afternoon for this recipe. I'm excited for the use of oats. I can practically taste it thanks to your pretty picture! Thanks again for sharing! So lovely. As always. :)
    HS: Thanks Nik - hope you like it!

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