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Andrew Whitley's Lammas Loaf

A light loaf celebrating harvest with a rustic crust and chewy crumb

Photo © Bread Matters

Photo © Bread Matters

Lammas celebrates the harvest and this recipe from Real Bread Campaign co-founder Andrew Whitley combines a mixture of cereals in a light loaf with a rustic crust and chewy crumb. 

This is a longer ferment Real Bread, made with a two-stage sponge-and-dough process for a great flavour and additive-free keeping quality. 


Makes one large loaf or two small ones

The sponge
5g Fresh yeast (or 3g active dried yeast)
140g Water (at about 20°C)
160g Brown flour (i.e. around 85% extraction)
[305g in total]

The soaker
100g One or more grains (eg flaked wheat, jumbo oats, pinhead oatmeal or other grains or flakes)
100g Water
[200g in total]

The dough
300g Sponge (from above)
260g Brown flour
6g Salt
170g Water (warm to the hand, i.e. 30-35°C)
200g Soaked grains (from above)
[936g in total]


Make the sponge well (4-16 hours) before you want to bake by dispersing the yeast in some of the water and adding it to the flour with the rest of the water. Mix until the dough has 'cleared', i.e. all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Put the sponge in a bowl large enough to allow it to expand to at least three times its original size. Cover with a lid or polythene bag and leave it at room temperature for at least 4 and up to 16 hours.

Meanwhile, stir the water into the soaker grain(s), cover with a polythene bag and leave at room temperature while the sponge rises.

Mix the sponge, flour, salt and water together into a soft dough. You may need to adjust the water to get the right consistency of dough. Knead, without adding extra flour, until it is stretchy (about 15 minutes). Cover and leave to rise for 1 hour. Then gently fold in the soaked grains until they are evenly incorporated into the dough.

Grease one large (900g/2 lb) tin or two small (450g/1 lb) ones. Shape the dough into either one large or two small loaves. Spread some cracked wheat/pinhead oatmeal/jumbo oats on the worktop and roll the dough piece(s) until completely covered. If the grains don't stick well, moisten the surface of the dough with a little water and try again.

Put the prepared dough into the loaf tin(s). Cover loosely with a polythene bag (making sure that it doesn't touch the dough) and let the loaf/loaves rise in a draught-free place until they have roughly doubled in size. Bake in a moderate oven (190°C) for 25-35 minutes, depending on your oven.

© 2009 Andrew Whitley / Bread Matters

Reproduction prohibited without written permission of the copyright holder.

Andrew Whitley's book, Bread Matters: The state of modern bread and a definitive guide to making your own, is published by Fourth Estate.

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Published 1 Aug 2009

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