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    Simple white loaf

    Never baked bread? Start here. All you need is five ingredients, a couple of hours and a little patience. 

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes, plus proving and cooling
    • Cooking time: 30 minutes
    • Total time: 50 minutes, plus proving and cooling

    Makes: 1 loaf Serves: 6-8

    Ingredients

    250g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
    1 tsp Allinson easy bake yeast
    1 tsp fine salt
    1 tsp caster sugar
    2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing  

    Method

    1. Mix the flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle and pour in the oil and 130ml hot water. Mix together with a wooden spoon until combined, then bring together with your hands. Knead by hand on the work surface for 8-10 minutes, only dusting with a little flour if it's sticky.

    2. Once the dough is smooth and shiny, turn it in your hands, tucking under to make a smooth dome on top. Place seam-side down on a floured baking tray; gently pat down the top to flatten slightly. Cover with a sheet of lightly oiled cling film and leave to rise for 1 hour 15 minutes.

    3. Preheat the oven to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Uncover the dough and, using a sharp serrated knife, make three 0.5cm-deep slits across the top. Cover again and leave for 15 minutes.

    4. Uncover, dust the top with a little more flour and bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely before slicing and serving with butter. 

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