The Fifty Breads Challenge. No.2 – Guinness bread rolls

When I started this challenge I didn’t realise how much I would enjoy it. Whilst making a cage between my hand and the worktop yesterday to roll my balls 😉 I realised I love baking. Love it. This is what I am meant to do. I had planned to make Ale bread rolls last week but time got away from me and I kept forgetting to buy Ale. Last night whilst having a kitchen rummage I found Guinness and after a quick twitter poll…thanks @higheight @flourandyeast and the very lovely @hollywoodbaker (aka Paul Hollywood) I discovered that it would be a suitable replacement so I got down to it.

Do you get stressed? Upset? Frustrated? You have to knead some dough. It really does wonders. I was feeling the Sunday night blues after an amazing week off with my family and starting to dread Monday morning but this chased them away. I discovered after I had set my mind to baking that I was missing another key ingredient : wholemeal flour. So with two out of six ingredients being replaced from the original (sorry Paul) so here is my take on Paul’s Ale rolls:

You will need:

500g – strong white bread flour ( Paul’s recipe calls for 400g white and 100g wholemeal )
Plus a little extra for dusting
10g instant yeast
10g salt
30g softened butter (unsalted)
300ml of Guinness ( or Paul uses ale such as spitfire)
Olive oil for kneading

Step 1.

Tip flours into large bowl, add salt to one side and yeast to the other side. Add the butter and 3/4 of Guinness. Move the flour around gently with your fingertips. Continue to add the Guinness a little at a time until you have picked up all the flour from the sides of the bowl. Your dough should feel soft, not soggy. Clean the inside of bowl with the mixture and make rough dough.

Step 2.

Lightly coat work surface with a little olive oil then tip dough onto it and begin to knead. Keep kneading for 10 minutes until it forms a smooth skin and feels silky and soft.

Step 3.

Put into a lightly oiled large bowl and cover with tea towel. Leave to rise for 1.5hrs or until at least doubled in size.

Step 4.

Line 2 trays with baking paper.


Step 5. Tip dough onto floured surface and fold inwards repeatedly until all air is out and it feels smooth. Split into 14 pieces weighing about 60g. Roll each one into a ball by making a cage formed with your hand and the worktop and moving your hand in a circular motion, rotating your ball rapidly. Place one ball in the middle and position the others around it so they almost touch and there are 7 on each tray.

Step 6.

Place each tray into a clean plastic bag and leave to prove for about an hour until dough is doubled in size and springs back quickly when prodded. Preheat your oven to 210c.



Step 7.

Dust the rolls with flour and give each one 3 snips with a scissors leaving the one in middle uncut. Bake for 30 mins until golden and sound hollow when tapped. Cool on a rack.



Eat with lashings of butter. Or dipped in stew. Or with ham and mustard……

This recipe was adapted from Paul Hollywoods How to Bake. If you fancy joining the challenge or just trying out some bread recipes this book is highly recommended.

If you want to join in the challenge please see the original post here or tweet your efforts #50breadschallenge


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