I’m lucky to be married to my husband for a whole host of reasons, including the fact that he was trained as a baker and worked as one all through university. It’s always such a treat to smell freshly baked bread coming out of the oven!
I enlisted his help when making the bread for the tapas dinner party – I’m still learning to knead the dough properly and it takes a lot of practice! I’m also not very patient when it comes to waiting for the bread to prove.
I found this recipe for Pan De Horno online here. However, we reduced the quantity of the recipe as we only needed one loaf for dinner. The following makes one generous-sized loaf (when you take the time to prove it properly!). This recipe also differs slightly as my husband shaped the bread before the second resting.
Pan De Horno
1 C warm water
2 1/3 C flour, high-grade (important to use this type of flour when baking bread)
2/3 tsp salt
1/8 C extra virgin olive oil
Mix the yeast in the warm water and let sit in a warm place for 10 minutes.
Mix the salt with the flour and run through a fine sieve, allowing it to fall into a large bowl. Using your fingers, mix in the oil.
Slowly pour in the raised yeast while working the dough with your hands so as to produce a firm dough.
Place the dough on a flat surface with some flour sprinkled on it. Knead the dough until it becomes firm and elastic.
Grease the bowl and place the dough in it. Cover the bowl with a moist dish towel and set in a warm place until the dough has doubled in volume.
Once again, remove the dough and knead it again over a floured tabletop to remove air pockets and until the dough feels smooth. Shape the dough into a loaf and leave to rest again, but this time on a greased baking pan. We left it for nearly an hour to make sure it was a decent-sized loaf.
Cut slits in the top of the bread as desired. (At this point, my husband also sprinkled the top with flour.)
Place in a very hot oven (230 degrees Celsius) for about 25 minutes, or until the top of the loaf becomes toasted and it sounds hollow when knocked on the bottom. We left it in until the outside was nice and crusty. while the inside was still soft.
Remove the bread from the pan and let cool.
We served our bread with an assortment of cured meats, olives, and Al Brown’s Lemon and Fennel Infused Olive Oil.