2lb Shipton Mill Stoneground Organic White Flour
4oz butter (unsalted)
1 pint of luke warm milk
3 level teaspoons of dried yeast
2 medium eggs
1 teaspoon sugar
3 teaspoons of salt
Add the yeast and sugar to half of the milk and leave in a warm place until it has started to froth, showing that the yeast is working.
Mix the salt into the flour.
Melt the butter in the other half of the milk.
Lightly beat the eggs and add them to the flour with the two milk mixtures. This will produce quite a wet dough which may need to be worked for a little while in the bowl, before being turned out onto a floured surface and kneaded until a good elastic dough is achieved. This will take 5 - 10 minutes.
Place into a greased bowl, cover and allow to rise for about an hour, or until it has doubled in size.
Knock back and form into 4oz balls which should be placed on a greased baking tray and covered with towels. Allow to rise for at least further hour, depending on temperature. I have found that 1 hour 20 minutes is fine and makes for a slightly lighter bread.
Bake at gas mark 6/180 degrees (fan)/ 200 degrees (electric) for 10 - 15 minutes until lightly browned on top. After 10 minutes I put them on a 'two minute watch' to get them out as soon as they are done. If the tops are browning too fast, cover them with some foil. The original recipe is lacking detail about cooking. All that we are told is to 'cook in a slow oven'. That, of course, would be a coal-fired, fireside oven. When I originally put this recipe up I suggested gas mark 4, treating the dough like a brioche. Whilst this does work - it takes longer - the bread is a little more solid. Further trials have shown that a shorter, slightly hotter, bake gives more rise and a lighter bread.
Glaze the tops of the cakes with melted butter whilst still warm and allow to cool on a wire cooling tray.