I was watching the Great British Bake Off this week and was tempted by the coconut bread rolls one contestant made. Well I couldn’t find a suitable recipe online so I made one myself. A few people have asked for it so here it is! It’s not intended as a sweet loaf but you can easily add more sugar if you want it to be.

500g extra strong white flour
1 1/2 teaspoons easy yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
400ml coconut milk
100ml water
1 tablespoon coconut or unflavoured oil
grated coconut (optional)

If you’re using a bread machine, mix together the dry ingredients and add to machine. Add coconut milk and rinse out tin with water before adding. I would suggest using the french bread setting or one with a long proving time. Add the oil and grated coconut at the end of the proving stage before it starts cooking.

I tend to use my bread machine to knead and prove the dough then transfer to the oven. If you want to do it by hand, thoroughly knead the dough and leave it covered for about an hour to prove in a warm place. Whichever way you chose, at the end of the proving stage add the oil and transfer it to a tin, divide into rolls or shape into a loaf as you wish. If you wish to add grated coconut, sprinkle it over the top and push it slightly into the dough (otherwise it will fall off as the dough rises). Leave the dough for 10-30 minutes to rise some more. If you’re feeling impatient you can pop it in the oven at the lowest temperature to speed it up.

Once the dough looks like it’s risen enough (I know, I’m very precise), it’s time to bake it! I’m a firm believer that everyone’s oven is different and you need to know how long things take to cook for you! Delia suggests you bake white bread at gas mark 8, 450Β°F, 230Β°C for 30-40 minutes but I find with my fan assisted oven 200Β°C is fine for about 40 minutes for a loaf in a tin. Obviously reduce the time for rolls or for free-form loaves. The bread should be golden in colour and sound hollow when you rap on it with your knuckles. If it doesn’t sound hollow you can always pop it back in the oven for a few minutes, bread doesn’t suffer in the same way as cakes for sinking in the middle.