Walnut and raisin bread

Walnut and raisin bread

How to Cook Bread
1 small loaf
Peter Cassidy

Walnut and raisin is a classic flavour combination. Use this as a basic recipe to try out other fruit and nut pairings, such as pecan and cranberry, hazelnut and chopped dried apricot, or pine nut and sultana. You will need a 450–500g loaf tin.


Quantity Ingredient
300ml milk
30g butter
1 teaspoon soft light brown sugar
10g fresh yeast
1 tablespoon tepid water
125g malted brown flour
125g strong plain white flour, plus extra to dust
1 teaspoon salt
1 small egg
oil, to grease
100g walnuts
100g raisins


  1. Pour the milk into a small saucepan and bring to scalding point over a medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat.
  2. Use a little of the butter to grease the loaf tin, then put the remainder in the saucepan with the hot milk and the sugar. Stir well over a medium to high heat until the sugar has dissolved and the butter has melted, then remove from the heat and leave to cool to tepid, about 38°C.
  3. Put the yeast in a bowl, add the tepid water and mix to a loose paste.
  4. Sift the flours and salt into a large bowl. Reserve 1 tsp of the bran from the sieve for the top of the loaf and tip the rest into the bowl with the flours.
  5. Break the egg into a small bowl and beat lightly, then add it to the flours. Add the yeast mixture and three quarters of the milk and butter mixture. Mix first with a cutlery knife and then with your fingers, adding enough of the remaining milk mixture to make a soft but not sticky dough.
  6. Turn out onto a very lightly floured surface and knead for about 5–8 minutes until smooth and elastic, using as little extra flour as possible on the work surface to stop the dough sticking.
  7. Place the dough in a very lightly oiled bowl and cover with lightly oiled cling film or a damp tea towel. Leave in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  8. Roughly chop the walnuts. Transfer the risen dough to the work surface and knock it back, kneading in the walnuts and raisins as you do so, for 2–3 minutes. Lightly oil the loaf tin.
  9. Shape the dough into a loaf and place smooth side up in the prepared loaf tin. Cover with lightly oiled cling film and leave to prove until risen by at least half its size again. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°C.
  10. Sprinkle the reserved bran over the top of the loaf and bake in the oven for 30–40 minutes, or until golden brown and it feels light and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Remove from the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.
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