Bread recipes inspired by Corsica

Updated on Jun 09, 2020 by Clarabel Jones

Blog > Bread recipes inspired by Corsica

Lockdown has led many of us to have more time on our hands, plenty of which has been dedicated to home-baking. Here are two recipes to try out, one of which is a traditional Corsican bake.

As we wait for the travel restrictions to be lifted, our minds are probably wandering to holidays gone by, times spent enjoying the cooling evening breeze with a crisp glass of wine and a barbecue as the sun drifts into the rolling landscapes.

My family have been looking over photos which reminded us of fond memories of our villa holiday in Corsica last summer. We enjoyed a twin-centre Corsican villa holiday that took us to Porto Vecchio in the first week and the southerly tip of Corsica near Bonifacio during the second.


Bonifacio


The Coronavirus lockdown has led many of us to have a little more time on our hands; for me, all this time at home has reignited my love for home baking!

Anyone who has visited Corsica, or maybe enjoyed the Hairy Bikers Mediterranean Adventure cooking and travel show, will know that many Corsican bakes and savoury dishes include chestnuts. Chestnut trees have grown in Corsica for centuries and in the 1500s the governor of the island decided that all land owners had to plant a minimum of four trees a year; in modern times, the total chestnut crop is estimated to be around 1,500 tons.

As a result of everyone’s newfound love of baking, flour has been in short supply. However, while delving deep into the back of my cupboards I managed to find some chestnut flour. My baking skills have recently graduated to tackling the banana bread, so I thought the next step would be to knock up a chestnut and banana loaf: a traditional Corsican cake.

If you fancy making this easy bake please see the recipe below. I have also included the recipe for my ‘No Knead Bread'. This would be mixed up the evening before being turned out and baked for 45 minutes the following morning.

 

Chestnut & Banana Loaf 

Ingredients

  • 190g chestnut flour
  • 1tsp bicarbonate soda
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 85ml whole milk
  • 225g soft brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 110g unsalted butter, softened


Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C / Gas Mark 4.
  2. Lightly oil your loaf tin and line with baking paper.
  3. Combine the dry ingredients – flour, bicarbonate, baking powder and salt – in a large bowl.
  4. Mix the mashed banana, milk and vanilla extract in a separate bowl.
  5. Blend the butter and sugar together with a hand mixer until light and fluffy in texture.
  6. Gradually add a tablespoon of the beaten eggs followed by a spoonful of the dry mix; keep alternating between eggs and dry until all the mix is together.
  7. Fold in the mashed banana mix.
  8. Pour this batter mix into your tin and bake for 40 minutes. To test whether it's cooked, push in a skewer and if this comes out clean the cake is cooked.
  9. Leave to cool and enjoy a taste of Corsica!
     
 


'No Knead' bread

Ingredients

  • 3 cups plain or bread flour
  • 1 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water

Method

  • Mix everything together to form a shaggy dough.
  • Leave it covered with clingfilm overnight (not in the fridge).
  • In the morning, put the oven on at 230°C / Gas Mark 8 and heat the Dutch oven in the oven as it heats up.
  • On a well-floured surface turn out the dough (it will be sticky) and knead a few times to make a loaf ball shape.
  • Carefully put the loaf into the Dutch oven and put the lid on. Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Take the lid off and bake for another 15 minutes.
  • Allow to cool before tucking in!

 

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