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The Eccles loaf

Paxo was first produced by an Eccles butcher! This bread is good with soups or chicken dishes. Using a mixture of white and wholemeal flours gives less of the stuffing flavour, but is very good too.


Eccles Loaf by Ian Guthrie

500 gm Shipton Mill strong bread flour, sieved.

280 gm Water, pleasantly hand warm, (good idea to weigh it - jugs can be


120 gm Paxo Sage & Onion stuffing mix - any big lumps of bread stuff may be removed.

10 gm Salt (sea salt is best—use less if preferred)

15 gm Baker's yeast or about 8gm instant dried yeast.

Olive or Rapeseed oil if you like.

This produces 925gm of finished dough. More Paxo may be added if a stronger flavour is required, which will need a corresponding amount of water.


  1. Grind the Paxo into a fine powder, and add to the flour.
  2. Put 100 gm of the water into a large bowl, and dissolve the yeast in it, with about 75gm of the flour, and leave it for 20 minutes. Yeast doesn't need sugar these days!
  3. Add the rest of the water, then the rest of the flour, salt and oil if you're using it. Mix with a wooden spoon until it comes together into a lump, then turn it out and knead for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. It will be sticky at first, but keep at it! You can dust the dough with a little bit of extra flour if it’s too sticky, but not too much! You can use a mixer with a dough hook, but it’s less fun!
  4. Cover and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size. It's even better to allow it to rise overnight in a cool place if you have the time.
  5. Tip out carefully on to a lightly floured surface, shape up into a ball and preferably place in a large banneton.
  6. Cover and allow a further 45 minutes or so, until doubled in size, then bake.
  7. Spray water into the oven or place a metal tray of water in the bottom - steam really helps.
  8. Baking will take about 40 minutes, starting high at 200 degrees and turning down to 180 after 5 minutes.
  9. The loaf will sound hollow when tapped on the base. This is a pretty pointless exercise, but can you resist doing it?