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Almond Filled Coffee Bread

ingredients

makes one loaf
1/2 quantity basic brown bread dough (SEE BELOW)
175 g (6 oz) almond paste
1 egg, beaten
25 g (1 oz) flaked almonds
125 g (4 oz) icing sugar, sifted
30 ml (2 tbsp) lemon juice

method

1. Grease a baking sheet. Knead the dough again and roll out to a 30 cm (12 inch) square. Cut into nine equal-sized squares.

2. Roll the almond paste into nine balls, flatten slightly and place one in the centre of each dough square.

3. Fold the corners of each square of dough over the almond paste and press down well to secure.

4. Place close together in three rows on the baking sheet. Cover with oiled cling film and leave in a warm place to double in size.

5. Brush with beaten egg, sprinkle with almonds and bake at 230°C (450°F) mark 8 for 15-20 minutes. Slide on to a wire rack and cool a little.

6. Mix the icing sugar in a bowl with the lemon juice and sufficient water to give a pouring consistency. Drizzle over the still warm bread. Eat while warm.

Basic Brown Bread

25 g (1 oz) fresh yeast or 15 ml (1 tbsp) dried
about 500 ml (18 fl oz) tepid water
750 g (1 lb 10 oz) brown wheatmeal bread flour
15 ml (1 tbsp) caster sugar
10 ml (2 tsp) salt 25 g (1 oz) lard
1 egg
barley kernels, to finish

Makes three 450 g (1 lb) loaves or one 900 g (2 lb) loaf and one 450 g (1 lb) loaf

1. Crumble the fresh yeast into a bowl and cream with a little of the water until smooth. (If using dried yeast, reconstitute according to packet directions.) Sift the flour, sugar and salt into a large bowl and rub in the lard. Stir in the yeast liquid and remaining water to give a manageable but not sticky dough.

2. Knead well on a floured board until smooth and elastic–ťat least 10 minutes. Shape into a ball and place in a large, oiled bowl. Stretch oiled cling film over the top of the bowl. Leave in a warm place for the dough to double in size, about 40 minutes.

3. Grease three 850 ml (1 1/2 pint) loaf tins. Knead the dough again for 3 - 4 minutes. Make into three loaf shapes and place each, seam-side down, in a prepared loaf tin. Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise until double in size.

4. Beat the egg with a pinch of salt and lightly glaze the loaves. Sprinkle with barley kernels and bake at 230°C (450°F) mark 8 about 20 minutes until well browned. Lower the heat to 180°C (350°F) mark 4 for further 10 minutes, or until the loaves sound hollow when tapped. Remove from the tins and cool.

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