I went through a phase, some years back, when baking bread was the major thing I wanted to cook. I even had a bread-maker given to me as a present - which is an amazing thing indeed and which is guaranteed to put on as many unwanted kilos as you can imagine! You put all the ingredients into it, switch it on, set the timer and bread comes out when you need it, piping hot and perfect.
There are two draw-backs. Firstly, don't ever lose the recipe book which accompanied the bread-making machine, because then you are really buggered. You can't just put any recipe into it. The recipes are utterly specific and if you are not exact in your measurements, all hell breaks loose.
Secondly, I really like working with the dough. With the bread-maker, there never is a dough - (unless of course, that is the setting you put it onto, but then I don't quite see the point!). So, back to the old tried and tested...
Here is a really simple, and really delicious recipe for Sweet Potato bread. It is virtually idiot proof:
Sweet Potato Bread
1 medium sweet potato
4 cups of brown bread flour
1 t ground cinnamon
1 t dried yeast
1 ¼ C warm milk
Salt and ground black pepper
(optional) 2/3 C walnut pieces
Boil sweet potato in water for 45 minutes. Pour off water and cool in cold water.
Sift flour and cinnamon into large bowl. Mix in dried yeast.
Drain and peel sweet potato. Mash and mix in with flour with a rounded knife into a rough dough. Knead on a floured surface for 5 minutes.
Return to the bowl, cover with cling wrap and stand in a warm place until doubled in size – approximately 1 hour.
Grease 900g loaf tin with non-stick spray.
Knock back dough and shape into the size of the tin. Cover with a cloth and let it rise until doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 200°C
Bake for approx 20 mins
Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.