Put the flour, yeast, sugar and salt into a large bowl and blend them together.
Stir in the water, and when everything looks craggy and lumpy, stir in the oil.
Using your hands, gather everything together into a doughy mass.
Knead the dough in the bowl, or on a work surface, for 100 presses. Avoid adding flour if possible.
Cover the dough bowl with oiled cling film and leave it in a warm place for the dough to double in size, which will take about an hour.
Dust a large oven tray with flour.
Knead the dough for another 100 presses then form it into an oval with the seam to the top.
Flatten the dough, stretching it into an oblong about 25cm/10” long.
Fold one shorter side onto the middle of the oblong pressing it down with the heel of your hand.
Lift that thick piece of dough over onto the remaining dough and press that down with the heel of your hand.
Repeat another 3 or 4 times to create a new oval about 25cm/10” long.
Transfer the dough to the floured tray putting the seam at the bottom
Dust lightly with flour.
Using a sharp knife make diagonal slashes across the top of the dough.
Leave the dough to prove for 35 – 40 minutes.
Pre-heat the oven.
Bake in a hot oven for 40 – 45 minutes.
You will know it’s done if the bottom sounds hollow when tapped.
Leave to cool on a wire rack.
large baking tray
240˚C, Fan 220˚C, 475˚F, Gas 9
Very good and reliable recipe for a white bread / bloomer. I use it also for baking bread rolls and pizza dough. The only difference is that I bake it in 210 Celsius degree and turn upside down for last 5 minutes to create crust at the bottom. I also paint with milk and sprinkle with either sesame or poppy's seeds and salt. Sometimes I add buttermilk instead of water to improve taste. Overall, this is brilliant recipe that can be adopted in many ways and yet produces brilliant results