Red Wine and Onion Baguettes.
This is another recipe that I’ve never made before. I really enjoy making bread, but I am yet to fully master the skill of baking a perfect loaf! I had a few setbacks in following this recipe – mainly that I don’t own a set of scales at my university house!
I estimated 10g of salt as about 1.75 teaspoons, and had to guess the size of the eggs. I had two large eggs, which weighed roughly 63-73g each (according to the internet!). 250g of milk is about 1 cup. Considering this was all guess work, I’m surprised I didn’t have a bread catastrophe on my hands!
400g Plain white flour
100g Strong white flour
250g Milk (roughly)
40g Caster sugar
1 Large onion
3TPS Red wine vinegar
Combine the flours, yeast and salt in a large bowl. Make sure you keep the salt and yeast separate.
Break the two eggs into a saucepan, and add roughly one cup of milk (you may need more or less depending on the size of your eggs – if you can, weigh your eggs and add enough milk to make the total weight to 350g!) Mix in 40g of sugar and put on a low heat, stirring all the time until it is just warm.
Making your hand into a claw shape, mix together the wet and dry ingredients together. You should get soft dough. Knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is nice and smooth. You may find you need to add more milk here if the dough is too tight. Leave in the bowl and cover with Clingfilm whilst you prepare the onions.
Slice the onions thinly and soften in a pan on a medium heat with the olive oil. They should be slightly browned, but not too soft – you want some bite left to them. Then throw in the red wine vinegar and reduce until the onions are sticky. This should only take a few minutes. Leave to cool for 10-15 minutes.
When the onions are just warm, combine them into the dough until the colour is even all the way through. Place back in the large bowl, cover with Clingfilm and leave to rest in a warm place until it has doubled in size. For me, this took about an hour.
Once the dough has risen, place it on a heavily floured surface and begin to shape into a baguette. Pre-heat the oven to 210*C (my oven only goes up to 200…) and place a baking tray on the top shelf. If you want a really crispy crust, place a shallow baking tray on the bottom shelf of the oven and fill with water. This will create a steam bath – great for producing a crust.
Prove again for 30-40 minutes on a floured tea towel. It is a good idea to separate each baguette with a fold in the tea towel so that they support each other and keep their shape. Once you have proved, bake in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes. The baguettes will colour quickly, so you want the crust quite dark.