Beetroot and Honey Bread

Fresh beetroot is a love of mine and I was looking for more recipes to use it when I came across a recipe for beetroot bread. The recipe I found turned out to be unworkable with the dough ending up a sloppy mess, but after a few modifications I came up with a dough that baked into a lovely soft bread with a firm and chewy crust. I actually didn’t expect it to be this good and am so glad the recipe made two loaves! It made beautiful toast the next day and I didn’t waste a single slice!

Ingredients

  • 5 cups plain flour
  • 1 medium sized beetroot, peeled and diced
  • 1 Tblsp yeast
  • 1 Tblsp sugar
  • 1 cup lukewarm beetroot water
  • 2 Tblsp honey

Place beetroot in a small pot and cover with about 1½ cups water. Cook until beetroot is a little soft and water is very red.
Allow to cool then strain, reserving the water, and transfer the beetroot into a blender, add the honey and whiz until it is almost smooth. I left a few small chunks for a bit of added texture.
In a large bowl add the beetroot water, yeast and sugar. Set aside for 10 mins till it becomes frothy.
Sieve in the flour and mix well, then add beetroot and mix thoroughly.
Turn dough out onto a floured bench and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
Splash a bit of olive oil into the bowl, return the dough, cover and place in a warm spot until doubled.
Punch down the dough, shape into two loaves, place on a floured or greased baking tray, cover and allow to rise for a second time.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius, slash the bread with a sharp knife if desired and bake for 30-35 mins. Bread is ready when tapping on the base produces a hollow sound.
Transfer bread to a cooling rack and let it cool (if you can resist eating it hot out of the oven!)

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