Freshly and Lovingly baked on : the ninth day of August in the year two thousand and fifteen
You must be thinking I am so weird to have wrote the date this way. However, this is what Mr Lee Kuan Yew spoke out during his proclamation 50 years ago. He is already such a “statement” back then. And he is still making wave with a nation that he has built even when he is physically not around. I always feel proud to be part of this nation. I am proud of my heritage, my language and my identity. Today, I wept as I saw the whole nation transformed and united as We continued to forge on and carry on his legacy.
It might not have been easy to start out but it requires equal mental strength and willpower to sustain. Not to mention that He has given us such a high starting point for those who has been left behind. As I watched the pride of the nation, I crave for bread (okie, I know its anticlimax and why am I thinking of food when the whole of Singapore is engrossed with the NDP). However, it is not just any bread, but good old fashion kopitiam bread. The smell of freshly toasted bread from the kopitiam, slathered with butter and a good dose of kaya and a cup of strong kopi-o (local black coffee) are such memories that I will always hold dearly to regardless of where I will be in the world. This is home truly and such food memories will always mean that it is never possible to take the Singaporean out of a citizen!
I jumped out of my comfortable sofa and get on with it. Those Singaporean who are abroad and misses the smell of such local bread can now bake them on your own. It is really simple! I cannot help you with the kaya because that will really take quite some time and some ingredients might not be easily available in your country. However, the ingredients require in this bake can be what are alreadily available in your own pantry.
Ingredients: (3 tiny loaves)
20g Unsalted Butter
200g Bread Flour
3g Instant Yeast
Mix all ingredients in a mixer except for the butter. Knead it well for about 10 minutes before adding the butter. Once the butter is incorporated into the dough, knead it for another 10 minutes. To see if its ready, take a small piece of the dough and see if you can stretch it without breaking it. If it passed the window pane test, then you are ready to go.
Let it proof for an hour or until it doubled in size. Once that 1st proofing is done, punch the dough down and divide it into 3 pieces of 120g dough each. Round it up and let it rest for 10 minutes. Then roll it flat out into an oval shape before rolling it up like a swiss roll. Place it in the baking ware and let it do its second round of proofing for another 40 minutes. Bake it in a preheated oven of 185 degree for 20 minutes. However, if you like to bake it in a loaf pan, increase the baking time to 35 to 40 minutes and double the recipe.
After baking, I realised that this bread is best bake in a loaf pan and enjoy it in slice up form (the usual way the kopitiam serve it them). I have baked it into individual tiny loaves so that it facilities me to package and give it away.