Sesame Milk Loaf

21 Comments
white loaf

Soft & golden: the perfect breakfast loaf

Let’s imagine it’s Sunday morning. You’re in bed. The curtains are still drawn where you left them last night but a little chink is letting in just enough light to make you stir. Cocooned in a warm envelope of covers, your eyes and nose peek out over the top and, as you begin to wake, the salty, smoky smell of sizzling meat wafts in under the door. Someone – probably someone who loves you very, very much – is making you a bacon sandwich.

breakfast loaf

Using milk instead of water creates a lovely soft, textured crumb

From the ages of eleven to twenty I was a vegetarian. I’d never really liked a lot of meat anyway (except sausages, salami and, perhaps somewhat surprisingly for a small girl, thick slabs of t-bone steak) but it was the welfare issue that clinched it: I couldn’t get along with the idea of eating animals when there was no way I could bring myself to kill them or even begin to think about the process that led to producing a packet of meat. However as I got older, I started to feel like I was missing out, that there was a world of food out there I needed to be trying and that perhaps, just perhaps, I could make as much of a difference by buying organic and higher welfare meats than by taking a stance and not eating them at all.

white loaf

Sesame seeds add a lovely extra crunch

Predictably – apparently it’s the thing that turns most vegetarians – the first meat I ate was a bacon sandwich. I was round at Carnivorous – then Boyfriend’s – student house at university and hadn’t had any supper. In amongst the sky high piles of washing up – some stacked in the sink, others used as ash trays (ever wondered whether to live with six boys in their early twenties? Definitely don’t do it) – we’d managed to locate a loaf of bread with which to fashion a meal. No butter, of course, but there was an open pack of bacon in the fridge. I could eat a piece of plain bread, he said, or be introduced to the joys of a sizzling, salty, greasily good bacon sandwich for the very first time. I didn’t have much choice.

white loaf

Serve this bread in thick, buttered slices

Nowadays I’m a little more discerning about my bacon sandwiches. The bacon needs to be free range, thick cut smoked back bacon, just the right side of crispy (I’ll forgive you if you’re a fan of streaky but I’m not so sure about unsmoked). The bread needs to be soft, not toasted, and thinly spread with real butter. I might add a scrunch of black pepper if I’m feeling adventurous. A squeeze of ketchup but not brown sauce. Never an egg – that’s Carnivorous Fiancé’s domain and he’d probably cram in three – the simple combination of bacon, bread and butter is good enough for me.

Which, of course, brings me onto the bread. While brown bread wins hands down in my every day eating baking hall of fame, when it comes to bacon sandwiches, white is my slice of choice. BLT? Brown bread every time. Buttery bacon sandwich? It has to be white. The bread should be soft and slightly bouncy, thick enough cut to soak up all those lovely salty juices with just enough chew to contrast against crispy meat and melting butter.

white loaf

This soft, subtly sweet loaf is also delicious toasted

Milk loaves have a softer, more golden crust than their watery counterparts with a delicately sweet flavour. Using softened rather than melted butter gives this loaf a beautiful, light texture and the taste is rich, buttery and perfect for breakfast. I made two loaves this weekend just gone as we had a lot of people staying: this and my usual white tin loaf, and when comparing the two the milk loaf is definitely softer with a slightly tighter crumb.

Sliced thick it’s the ultimate bread for bacon sandwiches and is just as good the next day as toast, charred and crunchy and slathered in slightly salty butter. Next time someone’s making you breakfast, see if they wouldn’t mind rustling up one of these while they’re at it.

Sesame Milk Loaf
(makes one 1kg loaf)

Ingredients:

500g strong white bread flour
10g salt
25g golden caster sugar
10g instant yeast
30g unsalted butter, softened
320ml warm full fat milk
1 – 2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Method:

Tip the flour into a large bowl. Add the salt and sugar to one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other. Add the softened butter and three quarters of the milk then bring the dough together with your fingertips. Slowly add the rest of the milk to bring the dough together – you want it soft, not soggy so may not need all the liquid.

Tip the dough onto a lightly oiled work surface and knead for five to ten minutes or until the dough is smooth and silky. Roll into a ball then leave in a lightly oiled bowl covered with a tea towel until doubled in size. This should take an hour or so but it’s fine to leave for two or even three.

Brush a 1kg loaf tin with a little olive oil or melted butter. Tip your risen dough onto a lightly floured surface and knock back the air by folding inward repeatedly on itself. Form the dough into an oblong by flattening it out slightly and folding the sides into the middle. Roll the whole lot up so that the top is smooth with the join running along the base then put into the prepared tin. Slash the top lengthways then brush with a little water and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Put the tin inside a clean plastic bag and leave to prove for about an hour, or until the dough has doubled in size and springs back quickly if prodded. Preheat the oven to 210 degrees C.

Bake the loaf for 25 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped underneath. Remove from the tin and leave to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing and making the best bacon sandwiches of your life.

21 RESPONSES TO Sesame Milk Loaf

  1. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for! I need a good milk bread recipe and I’ve found it. Just bought a proper 1kg loaf tin and this is the first thing I’ll bake. Cheers! :)

  2. You can’t cut bread straight either! I was always having a go at my parents about it before I moved out :D. (It doesn’t matter really)… I love bacon sandwiches – they are SO good…. too good… Also, this loaf looks seriously amazing. I really need to do a milk loaf recipe! I’ve been meaning to do so for so long.

  3. whilst not tempted in the LEAST by your loving description of bacon butties, I would use this delicious (doctored to be vegan) loaf to rustle up the very best EVER chip butties…we vegans might not have salty bacon but we can still have chips and white bread is the best way to serve them :) Cheers for this prospective heavenly chop butty ingredient :)

  4. Kavey -

    Yeah, has to be soft white bread and real butter and for me, streaky smoked bacon, with ketchup. More recently, have been making with tracklements’ mustard ketchup, also proper delicious!

  5. Ooh I’ve always wanted to try a milk loaf. My bread-baking days are on hold for a while due to PhD-induced stress but I can’t wait to get back in the kitchen! I don’t think I’ve eaten a bacon sandwich in at least ten years. This definitely needs to change.

  6. That really does look like the perfect loaf and now I can’t stop thinking about a bacon sandwich!

  7. I used to be a vegetarian too, I was ok with humans eating meat, just not with factory farming as I think factory farming is animal abuse… In Belgium we only have factory farms, so I didn’t eat meat. Until I found a farm where I could buy my meat straight from the farmer. I visit the farm often and the animals are reared with care and love.
    I needed meat as I got ill without it in my diet. So with the new farm found I started to eat meat again.
    I love bacon, LOVE it… but we don’t have bacon pigs here. So no bacon! The pigs here don’t get to the age of bacon pigs and they’re also not suited for that cut of meat. I recently found an Irish butcher in Brussels so now I can have my bacon, ven free range…
    And my juicy Black Angus T-bone steak :)
    I agree, bacon sarnie needs white bread!
    Such a luxury with your bread, I must try and make it when I next get some bacon!

  8. I’ve just started baking bread and this looks like an amazing recipe to try. Absolutely living the idea of the bread with bacon and butter – pure bliss! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Your loaf looks divine and I have some sesame seeds in the cupboard that have been looking for a project so I think I’ll be using them soon!

  10. I may have just eaten but I’m desperate for a bacon sandwich now! I totally agree about the white bread too, it’s mandatory for a proper bacon sandwich.

    • Riley – how exciting, hope you get the baking bug as bad as I have :-)

      Frugal Feeding – hmmph, in my defence we had eight people staying in our tiny two bedroom flat and I cut it in a hurry! :-)

      Narf – I’m not sure how you’d make a milk loaf vegan, maybe some sort of almond milk might work?

      Kavey – ooh, that sounds delicious.

      Elly – I don’t eat bacon that often either, but when I do, it’s definitely worth it.

      Sophie – haha, once the thought gets in there, it’s hard to resist.

      Regula – knowing where your meat comes from is so important. Hopefully you’ll get your hands on some wonderfully produced bacon soon so you can make the sandwich you’ve been waiting for :-)

      Jasline – my pleasure!

      Camilla – I love sesame seeds on top of a loaf, alongside poppy seeds and oats I think they’re my favourite topping.

      Kathryn – white bread + bacon = breakfast bliss :-)

  11. There’s definitely a place for a good white loaf-and in a bacon sandwich is one indeed! I find the smell of bacon hard to resist :) And hehe will we b hearing more stories about living with the boys?

  12. My Kitchen Stories -

    You have brought up some really sensitive issues for me at the moment. Ethically sourced meats to eat or not to eat. That aside what a beautiful loaf of bread. If I made that Id have to take it everywhere with me to show I off. You are the master !! You deserve someone to make you a sandwich ( love the waking up description)

  13. Oh, yum! I tried back bacon for the first time last weekend, and I’m glad I grabbed all the marked down packages when I did because it is tasty!
    Thanks!

  14. Is there anything more wonderful than good bread and bacon? I think not. It’s always the simple things! This loaf looks perfect too. Next time I make a white loaf, I’m getting this recipe out!

  15. I am so happy to have found your site! There’s not a slice of homemade bread that I don’t adore!

  16. much as I love crusty hearty sourdoughs, I really like super soft tender loaves too. it’s actually the kind of bread htat was more common growing up in asia, and I miss finding this sort of bread here, because the mark of a good bread here tends to be the more artisan wholegrain sourdough hard loaves. nice one, I’ll be sure to try it!

    • Lorraine – maybe, not sure all the stories are for public consumption though ;-)

      My Kitchen Stories – every so often someone does make one for me (even if I’ve made the bread) :-)

      Kirsten – back bacon is delicious, I tend to opt for it over streaky.

      Connie – thank you, and enjoy!

      Kelly – once you’ve had homemade bread you’ll never go back.

      Sylvie – it really is, this recipe is definitely a keeper.

      Shuhan – I eat so much wholemeal, sourdough and multigrain bread that I sometimes forget how delicious a homemade white loaf can be!

  17. laythetable -

    I love milk loaf – I think it’s my favourite! We TRY our best to buy free range but for pork, beef and lamb it means we have to go to the organic farm on the other side of Leeds. It should be available in the flippin’ supermarket! Also Mr LTT has spent months perfecting the perfect bacon sandwich – he thinks oven & grill combo is the best! And you’re right, it’s got to be bread, not toast :)

  18. Thanks a lot! Now I MUST go out and buy me some bacon…

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