National Wheatmeal Loaf

During the second World War, bread was a belly filler, as none of its components were rationed. The government introduced the National Wheatmeal loaf, so that every bit of the wheat crop was used. Although unpopular when it was first introduced, wholemeal bread is healthier and more flavoursome than the previously common white loaves. Why not give it a go yourself?

Ingredients

680g wholemeal bread flour
1 ½ tbsp salt
1 ½ tbsp dried yeast
1 dsp honey or treacle
450 ml tepid water

Method

  1. Mix all of the ingredients together until the dough comes together
  2. Knead for about 10 minutes to form a soft dough
  3. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with a tea towel, and leave to rise until doubled in size (around 2 hours)
  4. Once risen, knock back the dough and give it a short knead
  5. Cut the dough into two equal pieces and place them in 1.5 litre loaf tins
  6. Cover and leave to rise for a further 2 hours
  7. Bake the loaves in an oven preheated to 200°c for 30 minutes
  8. The loaves are ready when tapping the base creates a hollow sound
  9. Cool on a wire rack

 

You can find the original recipe here along with some other classical wartime recipes