Some of my earliest memories revolve around a bowl of bread dough. My dutiful mother baked bread on an open fire from as early as I can remember, she was always grateful for some help and taught my sisters and me how to perfect the art when we were very young. Baking bread in a kitchen with all the mod cons is quite a feat, baking bread with nothing but a stainless steel bowl and a cast iron bastable is another thing altogether. I remember my mum telling me when I was about 6 or 7 that each time you knead the dough you press a little bit of love into it and as the dough rises the love expands.
I've always cooked the old fashioned way, with a hand whisk, a wooden spoon and mixing bowl, but recently I invested in a Kitchen Aid so wanted to try making something new. I’d had freshly baked brioche from bakeries in France, but never seen it in the UK. It’s a light buttery bread that’s somewhere between bread, cake and croissant in its flavour and style. It has a golden crust and the baked dough comes apart in gentle reams when you pull at it. It’s slightly sweet and can be eaten with jam but is also wonderful with pâtés and other savoury dishes as well as on its own. I’d never attempted to make it before, as it sounded quite complex and recipes tend to revolve around a Kitchen Aid.