3. Mix on speed 6 (medium speed) for 6 seconds, or until combined. Check dough – it should be soft and a little sticky. If your dough isn’t a little bit sticky when making wholemeal bread, you’ll end up with dry, crumbly bread. If necessary, add a little more flour and re-mix. Knead for 2 to 3 minutes in Thermomix on interval speed, until soft and stretchy.
[Note: If you are going to braid this bread, the dough will need a bit more flour – it won’t keep it’s shape if it’s sticky.]
4. Wrap dough in silicon bread mat (or lightly oil large bowl, roll dough in oil, cover bowl with plastic bag) and leave to rise until doubled in size. (I place it in a cold oven, with a pan of hot water on the bottom shelf, and the warm, moist environment helps it rise. This way it only takes 15-20 minutes to rise.)
5. Punch down and shape dough. Dough will be quite sticky – add a handful or two of flour if you need to, but only add enough to be able to handle it – don’t dry it out with too much flour.
For a braid: divide dough in three, and roll into equal length ropes, 2 to 3 cms thick. Pinch one end together, braid tightly, pinch other end together, tuck ends under and place on greased or papered tray. Repeat with other ball of dough. Once risen, brush with a mixture of:
– 1 egg & 1 Tablespoon water, beaten.
Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
For a regular loaf or rolls: Roll dough into a neat log and place in a bread tin, or shape into bread rolls. Brush bread (or rolls) with water, sprinkle with sesame seeds (opt).
6. Rise bread or rolls in a cold oven with the pan of hot water on the shelf underneath, for about 10 minutes for loaves, or 5 minutes for rolls. (Bread will finish rising during cooking time.)
7. After bread has risen a little, turn on oven to 200º C (180º fan-forced) and bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until browned on top and slightly browned underneath. Bread should sound hollow when you turn it upside down and knock on it with your knuckles. If the top is brown but the bottom isn’t, you can put it back in the oven upside down (on the oven rack) and give it 5 more minutes.