I’m sure many of you have come across sandwich thins in the bread aisles of your local supermarket, they’re a staple in my shopping basket. But, you may think of them as a dieters bread, for those trying to reduce they’re “carbs” or “calories”. This is ABSOLUTELY not why I eat them!
I love their unique, spongey crumb paired with the firm but soft outer crust. For me they’re the perfect middle ground between a soft or crusty bread roll. What’s more, I’m a girl who loves her sandwiches oozing with filling and with bread thins filling overload is guaranteed. Because they’re slight, they are like a fluffier flatbread, so are great for mopping up curry sauces and they can also be toasted and top with your favourite spreads too. The versatility is endless!
To reduce my use of plastic I wanted to have a go at making my own thins as I was getting through 1-2 packs a week. On researching bread thin recipe I found a lot contained egg which I didn’t want to use as I try and follow as much of a plant based diet as possible and I didn’t understand why this was necessary when the supermarket versions don’t contain egg either. I also needed to make a recipe that was simple, required minimal ingredients and could be made in bulk.
This recipe is no trickier than making a simple loaf. The key is to remember a few simple rules that apply for making any bread and then you’ll be fine and dandy.
- Firstly, make sure your yeast is active
- Secondly, allow enough time for each prove of the bread as a good rise will give you a spongier crumb.
- Finally, and I’d say that hardest part is adding the right amount of liquid to the dry ingredients too achieve the right consistency. You want to add enough liquid to make a dough that sticks to your hands and smudges over the table when first kneaded but, not so gloopy that its doesn’t hold its shape when turned out onto the table. As you continue to knead the dough will become lass tacky.
Trust me, once you’ve mastered this recipe you’ll never look back!
(Dough shaped, ready for second prove)
(This recipe makes 12 sandwich thins)
- 225ml warm water (250ml required if you add the optional ingredient)
- tsp honey (or any other sweetener)
- 10ml olive oil (extra for greasing)
- 7g fast action, dried yeast
- 125g wholemeal plain/self raising flour
- 150g wholemeal strong bread flour
- optional, 10g ground flaxseed, poppy or wheatbran (this just gives extra bite but is by no means essential)
- 1/4 tsp salt
1. In a small bowl or measuring jug mix the warm water, honey, olive oil (fat helps with softer crumb) and yeast, then set aside for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes check the mixture is foamy, if not your yeast is dead, if used, your bread wouldn’t rise and would be hard and tough. In this instance try to source new, fresher yeast.
2. Meanwhile in a larger bowl mix the flours, flax (optional) and salt together, make a well in the middle of the grains.
3. Add 225ml of water to form a dough that is not completely gloopy and runny but wet enough it will stick to your hands (see pictures above) You may need 25ml less or more water depending on the quality of your flours.
4. Grease a clean work surface with a little olive oil, don’t use flour as you don’t want to alter the texture of the dough. Knead the dough for 10-15 minutes (I use a cake scraper to help me scrape up the dough from the table and my hands every so often whilst its still a wetter dough). As you knead the dough it will come away from your hands and will stop smearing and adhering to the table instead forming a more uniform, familiar looking dough.
5. Place the dough in a large bowl lightly greased with olive oil. Cover with a tea towel and leave in a room temperature to warm, draught free place to rise for 1 1/2 – 2 hours.
5. On a clean surface lightly dusted with flour divide the dough into 12 balls before rolling each into rough squares or circles, about 5mm think. Place the bread thins onto baking trays lined with greaseproof. Prick the surface with a fork (merely for decoration) before leaving to rise in a draught free place for 1 1/2-2 hours. This prove is vital to make sure the breads puff up enough so that they are fluffy inside and suitable to cut in half.
6. Bake the breads in an oven preheated to 200 or 190 degrees for fan ovens, for 12-15 minutes until firm but springy when prodded.
7. Leave to cool on a wire rack before storing in an airtight container for between 3-5 days. Once cool I usually freeze them and simply take a couple out as and when I need, they will thaw at room temperature within an hour or you can defrost them in the toaster or microwave on a low power setting.