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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  • This looks beautiful and is making my stomach growl. Any thoughts on letting it rise in the refrigerator overnight? I'd love to make it at night and put it in the oven when the alarm goes off so we can have it for breakfast. Thanks!

  • Looks simple yet delicious, like you could eat it all day long. And the cookbook it came from is just adorable! I love it when a recipe comes hand in hand with a time, place, and people.

    Kathryn | Dramatic Pancake
  • I think I must have that cookbook! What a wonderful way to compile a family story and a lifetime of cooking.

  • As soon as this heat lightens up a bit, I am going to bake this bread. I know my girls will LOVE it!

  • I love to think of Ms. Dulcie living on in a sense through all these blog readers baking her bread. Isn't it funny how something as simple as a loaf of bread can make so many people feel good? Thanks for sharing the recipe. I plan on making it tonight. It will be my first yeast bread!

  • I love, love, love this. Seriously so inspired. I can't wait to try this recipe. Wish me luck on my first bread attempt!

  • just made this and it's WONDERFUL and so easy! thank you!

    Katy Taylor
  • After seeing the recipe, I went to their website. Sadly, Dulcie May passed away in 2009. I cannot wait to see what other tasty recipes are in the book. I love old family favorites!

  • This recipe is very similar to a wheat-oat bread recipe that I've been fiddling with for months. It's from an old cookbook that we've had for years, and it's full of wheat, wheat berries, and oats. What is it about denser wheat breads that they don't brown nicely on top? I always have to turn the broiler on, too.

  • I'm mostly partial to the typed card. So endearing.

  • This is great timing as I was thinking I should start baking my own bread. I'm not much of a baker but this recipe looks simple enough. Thanks, Heidi!

  • The minute I saw the recipe here I decided to take a break from my writing project and make this bread. Yes, it is dead simple (great for a person like me who loves to cook but is often averse to baking), and yes I did have everything on hand to make it. It's a delicious bread; I had a slice with cheese for my lunch, and then another with a bit of raspberry habanero jam from the farmers market. Thanks!

  • I have never seen or tasted a bread like this. It looks like a cross between a quick bread and yeast bread... and will probably exactly the right combination. Gran always knows best... :)

    Jennifer @ Raisin Questions
  • What a beautiful book!!!! I love the look of it, so sweet. And that bread looks delish. Could be great with a bowl of soup, too.

    The Elegant Eggplant
  • A wonderful looking recipe. Simple is what I love in cooking. I just put the cookbook on my Amazon wishlist. Now I must talk my wife out of starting that low carb diet today...

  • I saw this blog entry in my Facebook feed at 11:30. By 1:05 and I was eating fresh, no-hassle bread. I even misread the recipe and used oat flour instead of oats. It is lovely and almost gone, as everyone came out of the woodwork when they smelled bread cooking. I have been hoarding whole-grain based sourdough starters and reading every lovely whole grain baking book (oft-mentioned here), but I am reticent to bake bread frequently, as it feels like such a time-sink. Now I have no excuse. Thanks much to you and to Dulcie!

    Julie C.
  • made this recipe this morning. super easy and tastes great. the only thing i may do next time is cut back a tiny bit on the salt. also, i dry herbs from my garden in the summer and my first thought when i tasted this bread was how perfect it would be as a savory type bread--i think next time i may experiment by adding some dried rosemary. :)

    sherry caldwell
  • This cookbook has the same nostalgic feel of a recipe book I picked up while I was living in NZ. It is perfectly simpleand a good representation of the country's culture. Thank you for sharing!

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