Brown Rice, Roasted Squash & Stilton Loaf


You will need to start this recipe the night before, but it will only take a couple of minutes to make-up the sponge.  This is a ‘door step loaf’, requiring little or no shaping and only brief kneading.  It’s a lovely bread eaten fresh, but it’s best eaten over the following days- cut into thick slices and toasted.  After the first day, wrap it in cling-film and refrigerate it.  You could serve this loaf as an accompaniment to winter soups and stews, particularly with my Pyrenean Leek and Potato Soup (February 2015 Blog). For same recipe using a sourdough culture please see the Real Bread Campaign’s Winter 2016 True Loaf Magazine.


2g                    Organic Fresh Yeast  (or ½ tsp dried yeast – not fast acting)

200g                Wholemeal Spelt Flour

335g                Water, room temperature (if you are using dried yeast you will need to warm the water to about 28C)



300g                Strong Plain Flour  (eg Shipton Mill’s Organic No 4)

100g                Brown Rice, cooked with a good pinch of salt, drained and cooled (300g cooked weight)

10g                  Malden Sea Salt

300g                Peeled and cubed (2-3cm) Butternut Squash.  drizzled with extra virgin  olive oil and roasted until soft and tinged with some colour, then cooled

200g                Stilton Cheese, with the rind removed

Everyday Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Sponge: Weigh the yeast, spelt flour and water into a large bowl.  Mix thoroughly until the yeast has dissolved, drape the bowl with a damp cloth and leave it at room temperature overnight or for 8-12 hours.

Dough:  The sponge will have increased in volume and should be packed full of a honeycomb of bubbles.  Stir in the remaining flour, the cooked rice, and the salt, and work it  until you have a sticky, lumpy piece of dough with all of the flour fully incorporated; this should take about a minute.  Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and leave for 30 minutes.

After 30 mintues, knead the dough for a couple minutes; if the dough is very sticky, knead it in the bowl by just lifting edges of the dough, stretching it upwards and folding it back into the centre. Work around the bowl several times.  Cover the bowl with the damp cloth and rest for a further 30 minutes-1 hour.

Check the gluten development using the window-paning method and if it stretches without tearing it is ready. The rice may cause the dough to tear a little but you can still get a sense if it is ready.  If the dough tears easily it is not ready, so knead it for a further minute and rest it for a few more minutes.

Once the dough is ready, place it into a clean bowl then cover the bowl with a piece of oiled cling film. Place the bowl into the fridge for 12-24 hours to bulk prove. The dough will inflate to about double it’s original volume.

Gently remove the dough from the bowl and place onto a lightly oiled work-surface.  With oiled fingers stretch the dough into a rectangle about 26cm x 32cm.   Scatter the roasted squash and crumble the cheese over the rectangle. Starting with the shorter edge, roll-up the dough carefully; keeping the squash and cheese in place. Lift ‘the swiss roll’ on to a  baking tray lined with baking parchment.  With oiled fingers push the dough out to measure a rectangle about 17cm x 32cm, if it resists allow the dough to rest for 15 minutes.  Drizzle the dough generously with olive oil and drape  a piece of cling-film loosely over the top of the loaf.  Prove  the loaf at room temperature until it has increased in volume by about 80%.

Preheat the oven to 225C and bake the loaf until it is a deep golden brown, this will take about 30-35 minutes.