Where do the holes come from? The Science of Bread.

We wanted to know how the holes got into bread so we watched Maisie making a loaf of bread ‘Yummy Good for your Tummy Bread’ and then made some ourselves.

Click here for the video showing how to make the bread

Watching the yeast fermenting and producing all those tiny bubbles is fascinating and children love to have a go kneading the bread dough.

Using fresh yeast to do this makes the science behind bread making much clearer.

After producing a really delicious loaf of bread using Maisie’s instructions we looked at the conditions needed for the yeast to work.

This is what we did:

We put the same amount of yeast in seven dishes.

Dish A … we added sugar.

Dish B … we added cold milk

Dish C … we added warm milk

Dish D …we added sugar and cold milk

Dish E … we added sugar and warm milk

Dish F … we added sugar and very hot milk.

Dish G … just yeast. Nothing added.

Then the children were asked to PREDICT which dish the yeast would work best in.

The dishes were left for 30minutes.

This dish did the best. Which was it? What conclusions did we draw?Well, you need to try the experiment out for yourselves to find out because that is what ‘Jumble Fun’ is all about! Motivating children to be ‘hands on’

A good introduction to the simple science of yeast for very young children can be found on the Jumble Fun in the ‘Science for Kids’ playlist on out channel: http://tinyurl.com/funjumbles

In this programme Lizzie Witch illustrates how to blow up a balloon using yeast

Click here for the yeast and balloon experiment

Yummy, Yummy, Good for your Tummy Bread!

My very popular recipe. It can be made in a breadmaker if you must …….. but WHY? ?

After all, who can resist the feel of all that sticky gunge between the fingers and a kitchen transformed into a floury winter wonderland!

But with a little kneading that sticky gunge is miraculously transformed into a silky, elastic dough that is just heaven to squeeze and stretch into interesting creations.

Apart from the actual baking there's not much a child can't do when making bread. Use your own discretion. You know your child better than anyone.

Let them be creative. Let them adapt the recipe. Be prepared for a few strange outcomes …. it's better that they experiment … they will learn from failures. Just make sure that they see a failure as something positive and the start of a new product and not the end. This will probably be more difficult for you than them when faced with a floury kitchen! But then, that's important too. They need to learn how to clean up even if it takes twice as long!

Ingredients

Strong Flour. 500grams A mixture of wholemeal and Granary is good. The coarser the better. I like to add a little black Rye flour too.

Fresh yeast …. much more fun than the dried stuff in packets! (That doesn't erupt!)

One medium fresh juicy carrot. ( Definitely NOT a limp bendy one! )

Nuts! A small handful of walnut pieces or crushed hazlenuts or cashews or go mad and mix lots.

One teaspoon of runny honey or sugar.

Liquid … half and half water and milk.300 mls

VERY important …. 3 tablespoons of Virgin olive oil

2 level teaspoons of salt.

METHOD

Measure out the liquid . It should be tepid. Warm but not hot.

Crumble a cube or yeast into a mug. Add honey or sugar and cream together with a teaspoon.

Then pour on half the liquid. Stir then watch in fascination for about 15 mins. while bubbles began to surface.

If you can tear yourself away from the bubbly volcano this is the time to measure everything else into the largest bowl possible. (less mess).

At the point when the yeast threatens to spill over the top of the coffee mug pour it and the remaining liquid into the bowl.

Gunge lovers can then stick their (clean) hands straight in and get mixing. The more squeamish (adults) are allowed if necessary to initially draw the ingredients together with a spoon. Shame on you!!

Then turn out onto floury board or baking paper and knead and knead and knead till it's a soft and smooth as a baby's bottom!

Put back in the bowl. Cover with cling film and leave till double in size. About 60 – 90 minutes depending on how warm your kitchen is.

Then out it comes again for another good battering.

Then …. well the rest depends on imagination. Will it be a round cob or a pirate ship? A loaf or a teddy bear!

Whatever … place on a greased baking sheet and leave to rise again for about half an hour till its springy to the touch. At this point the oven needs to be turned on and preheated ( check own oven instructions for this and baking times).

The smell will be divine even if the outcome is not what was expected !