Bread: Botswana, Italy, & Antarctica

I love making bread and I have really enjoyed making so many different types of bread from around the world through this project. I wanted to share three bread recipes from very different places on earth that I loved making. I hope you enjoy!

Botswana: Mapakiwa

Mapakiwa are Botswana tea buns and what’s not to love about a delicious bread to have with tea?

This recipe comes to us via YouTube and Mama Boi, I believe she is from Botswana which is a major bonus! I love learning new recipes from people who are from the country we are learning about. She is so cute and I hope you enjoy watching Mama Boi’s video as much as I did πŸ™‚

To make it easier for you I have transcribed her recipe below- the few changes I made are in *italics. These are so dreamy, light, fluffy and delicious- Enjoy!

Mapakiwa – Botswana Tea Buns

Ingredients 

  • 5 Β½ cups bread flour *I ran out of bread flour so I did a ratio of 2 c bread flour and 3.5 c of All Purpose flour
  • 5 Tbsps sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 Β½ Tbsps instant yeast
  • 3 Tbsps cooking oil
  • 2 cups warm water 

Method

  1. Combine flour, sugar, salt, and yeast in a large bowl. Stir to thoroughly combine.
  2. Pour the cooking oil into the water and then pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Mama Boi recommends using a wooden spoon to mix it all together.
  3. Once the flour is moistened and the wet ingredients are fully incorporated switch to your hands and knead the dough in the bowl for 8 minutes.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands for a ‘good 8 minutes’ (these buns are light and fluffy and that is achieved with lots and lots of kneading).
  5. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a lightly greased bowl, cover with a towel and let it rise for 25 minutes or until it doubles in size. *It is cold where I live so it took 1 hour and 40 minutes for it to double in size
  6. Turn the dough back out onto a clean surface and knock back by kneading for a few minutes. Portion the dough into 22 balls … or 20 πŸ™‚ Watch the video for her technique, it helped me a lot in shaping the balls.
  7. Place the balls in a lightly greased baking pan (11 balls per pan) and cover with a cloth and allow to rise again for 25 minutes. *Mine took about 45 minutes- 1 hour for the second rise
  8. Bake at 350℉ for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
  9. Once baked, remove from the oven and brush the tops with melted butter.
  10. Allow to cool some in the tins before removing them but keep the mapakiwa connected till time to eat, enjoy with coffee or tea!

Enjoy with tea and some sweet honey butter!

Italy: Focaccia

So, I learned a little over a year ago that making bread with Martin was a lot of fun! He could help with every stage, kneading is just like playing with play dough, and with all the rising times it would easily fill our day.

So, we made focaccia- and I have got to tell you, out of all the different types of bread we have made, this one is perfect for little fingers!

If you’ve ever been to an Italian restaurant and received some flat dimpled bread that you dip into olive oil- that is focaccia! I used the Williams Sonoma recipe mainly because I own one of their cookbooks with this recipe in it.

…If I can, I always prefer to use physical cookbooks vs digital- I love the feel and the way well loved pages get messy…

The other reason I used this particular recipe is because it calls for All Purpose flour not bread flour like most recipes and I didn’t have any bread flour so AP it was!

Martin loved sticking his fingers in the dough to make the dimples and adding the sea salt. This boy LOVES salt, like licks it off his fingers, salt goes on everything loves salt. This is one we will be making again soon!

Antarctica: Fresh Crusty Bread

After doing much research, I learned that in Antarctica, they eat a lot of fresh bread and that is about the only ‘fresh’ thing they enjoy most meals. This crusty bread is the perfect pairing to hot delicious soup. One of life’s simple joys is dipping good bread into hot delicious soup.

Ingredients

  1. 875 g All purpose flour
  2. 2 tsp salt
  3. 1 package of yeast OR 2 1/4 tsp yeast
  4. 3 cups of water
  5. An electric scale

Method

  1. Place a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer onto an electric scale. Hand your little chef a measuring cup or scoop and encourage them to fill the bowl till the scale reads 875. (why by weight and not cups? No more headaches πŸ™‚ Little cooks often add too much or compact the flour, so if the number is not right you can simply add or scoop it out.)
  2. Add the yeast and salt, use your hand or a spoon to mix in with the flour
  3. Add the water and mix with a good wooden spoon or the dough hook on a stand mixer. (If you are in a time crunch use warm water- it will speed up the raising time, but will not have an in-depth flavor. If you can, use room temp water and give the dough the time it needs- you will be rewarded!)
  4. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and a tea towel and allow to rise for 2 to 3 hours.
  5. Preheat your oven to 450 F and place a pizza stone in the oven at least 45 minutes prior to baking. Add an oven safe bowl with a few inches of water in the bottom- this is the secret to achieving a good crust, steam!
  6. Once your dough has doubled in size tip it out onto a lightly floured piece of parchment paper.
  7. Flour your hands to reduce sticking, and form your dough into a ball- touching it as little as possible.
  8. Dust the to with flour and then with a sharp serrated knife, cut an X or slashes into the top of the loaf.
  9. Slide the parchment onto a cutting board and use that to transfer the loaf to the oven. Again use the parchment paper to slide the bread onto the pizza stone. (Parchment paper will save you with this recipe! It will help you get it into and out of the oven, think of it as a bread magic carpet)
  10. Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

This bread with its’ crunchy crust and fluffy inside is great with soup! I hope you enjoy making these breads with your little baker- you will have a world of fun while making a mess πŸ™‚

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