Saturday, December 12, 2020

Potato Bread

This bread recipe was inspired by the old 18th century cooking that Townsends does. The idea in those days was for the baker to stretch his flour consumption by adding in wheat substitutes to the dough.

The same principle can be applied to the supply chain disruptions due to this year's forced government lockdowns. Flour was one of the hottest commodities being panic bought. Yeast was too. In case you can't source any yeast, you could try to make your own sourdough starter as a substitute. Let's take a look at the recipe adapted to the modern era.

The general principle of adding potato to the dough is in a 2 parts flour to 1 part potato ratio. By weight, I calculated that out to 1 medium sized potato for every cup of flour. That should help take the guess work out if you do not have a kitchen scale.

Also unlike the 18th century, you're not going to be baking in an Earthern oven. With a modern oven, this bread bakes pretty well at 425F for about 20 – 25 min.

Here are the Ingredients you will need:


4 Cups of Flour + more for kneading

4 Medium Sized Potatoes

1 Tablespoon Salt

1 Tablespoon Dry Yeast

1 1/2 Cups Water

1) To start, the potatoes need to be made soft enough to process into bread. This requires boiling the potatoes. Wash and peel the potatoes. Once peeled, chop the potatoes into smaller pieces. This will make the boiling go quicker. It should take about 10 – 15 minutes of boiling to get the potatoes soft enough for the dough.

2) Strain the potatoes in a fine mesh colander. With the potatoes still in the colander, position it over a large bowl. Use a blunt object, like a potato masher or wood spoon, to force the softened potato through the mesh. This will make it significantly easier to mix in the flour.

3) With the potatoes mashed up, it is time to add in the flour and salt. Add in the 4 cups of flour gradually while stirring it in the with potatoes.

4) Once the dough has been homogenized, begin to add in the water. Before stirring in the first 1/2 cup of water, add in the yeast. After adding all the water, stir the dough until all the flour/potato mixture is incorporated.

5) On a floured surface, it is now time to knead the dough. Add more flour as needed to prevent the dough from getting sticky. Form a ball with the dough.

6) For me personally, I will be dividing this dough into 4ths. Form each piece into a ball, and either allow it to rise in a covered bowl, or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for later.

7) It'll take a few hours for this dough to rise, so place it in a warm location for at least 2 hours.

8) Preheat your oven to 425F. On an oiled cooking sheet, the dough can be plopped out on.

9) Bake the bread for 20 – 25 minutes, until the crust is a nice brown color.

10) The bread can be served immediately, or allowed to cool for some time before slicing in. 

And that's it! This bread is very delicious. The potato flavor is noticeable, but it does not detract from the fresh bread experience. Enjoy! 

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