Chapatti Atta Flour Bread Loaf, A Step-by-Step Guide
Chapatti Atta Flour Bread Loaf
This bread came about because Mamta was looking for a recipe for a loaf that can be made in India, which partly uses atta/ chapatti flour, without the final resulting loaf being too dense or crumbly. Chapatti flour is milled from hard grains, lending itself to bread due to its gluten/ protein content. At 10.5% on average, this gives enough elasticity for dough making, producing a soft, yet firm shaped loaf. I was able to make a wonderful loaf entirely from the chapatti flour, but if you prefer a lighter loaf, replace up to 50% of chapatti flour with white flour (maida). You can use either 7 gm. of fast acting or active dried yeast or a sour dough leaven. You can interchange fast acting & the active dried yeast in this recipe, as this is an all in one method. Usually, fast acting is mixed all in one directly into the ingredients, and dried active is activated in warm water and flour first. If using leaven, the loaf is marginally but not noticeably larger. The bread has a fine, light and nutty wheat flavour.
A few points to remember : 1. Add the oil to water. 2. If lining your tin, use baking parchment, not greaseproof paper which welds itself to bread dough and is impossible to peel off from the bread. 3. If the dough is rising slower than you think it should, just wait ... and keep waiting some more for that sign of life. It will rise on you; a slower rising loaf is a tastier loaf. 4. Use your eye not the clock. 5. Just use tap water, left on the counter to take the chill away (at room temperature). You do not need warm water. 6. Don't worry about how it looks, it's how it tastes that matters.
560 gm. atta/chapatti flour
400 to 410 gm. or ml. water
A drizzle of (olive/ sunflower/ vegetable) oil
7 gm. dried active yeast or 200 gm. leaven @100% hydration
5 gm. salt
Add oil to water in a jug.
Place all other ingredients together in a large bowl.
Mix with a knife, then bring together with your hands and knead for 30 seconds, until you have a firm, well mixed ball.
Place the dough ball in a clean, lidded pot and leave for 8-10 hours, i.e. overnight till the following morning.
First thing in the morning, knead the risen dough for 30 seconds, shape into a baton and place in your baking vessel - either a non-stick bread tin or a non-stick cake tin, or even a flat tray, whatever you have. Line the tin with baking parchment if it's not non-stick.
Sprinkle some flour on top, cover and leave it to rise on a kitchen surface, till almost double in size. This can take 1 hour 30 minutes in summer or 3-5 hours in winter, depending upon your kitchen temperature. Use your eye not the clock, if it is not ready, wait a little longer.
Heat the oven to 220 C 425 F or Gas Mark 7, placing a little water in an oven proof bowl or a tray at the bottom of the oven. Steam gives a softer result and encourages oven spring, that additional lift when baking.
Make a few slashes on the surface of your loaf, using a very sharp knife or a blade.
Put the loaf in the centre of the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, sometimes 50 minutes in a combination-microwave oven on convection setting.
Remove from the oven and shake the bread out from the tin. The bread is cooked when you squeeze the loaf and it gives a firm resistance, ie your loaf is well structured. If it feels too soft, return the loaf to the oven for a further 5 minutes.
Cool on a wire rack.