400gstrong white bread flourplus a handful more for dusting the rolls before they go into the oven
100gstrong wholemeal flour
300mlflavoursome good-quality ale
Olive oil for kneading
For the sandwich filling:
Baby spinach leaves
Mature Cheddar cheese
Chutney of your choiceI used plum and apple
Apple chunks from a tangycrunchy apple variety
Place the flour in a large bowl. Add the salt to one side of the bowl, and the instant yeast to the other side (yeast and salt don’t like to be in direct contact). Add in the butter and about three quarters of the ale. Mix the dough together with one hand. Add in more ale, a bit at a time until you’ve picked up all the flour from the sides of the bowl and you have a soft (but not really sticky) dough. You may not need all the ale.
Lightly oil your work surface with a little olive oil, then turn your dough out onto the surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. It will be a bit sticky at first, but will eventually get smoother. Clean and dry your bowl, wipe it with a little olive oil and place your dough in the bowl. Cover with clingfilm and then place in a warm room for 1-2 hours to prove - until the dough has doubled in size.
Line 2 baking trays with baking parchment
Once the dough has proved, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knock the air back out of it by folding it in on itself repeatedly. Divide the dough into 14 pieces. You can do this by eye, or if you want perfectly even bread, weigh it out. Each piece should be 60g. Roll each piece into a ball - making sure the top is smooth for each. I usually roll each ball and then tuck any messy bits underneath. Place one ball into the centre of each prepared baking tray and then space the other 6 rolls around the centre roll. They need to be close together, but not quite touching (they'll expand during the next rise and during baking). So you should have 7 rolls on each tray, basically in the shape of a flower - as in the picture above. Place each tray inside a large carrier bag and leave to prove for another hour.
Preheat your oven to 200c just before your dough has finished proving. Next, take the trays out of the bags and dust the rolls lightly with some white flour. Give each of the outside rolls 3 little snips with a pair of scissors (look at the picture to see the positioning). Place the rolls in the oven and bake for 30 minutes until the rolls are golden, and they sound hollow if you tap them from underneath.
Take out of the oven, and leave to cool before filling.
*Well wrapped in baking parchment and placed in a bread bin, these rolls will keep for 1-2 days. *If you're going to make this sandwich in advance, I'd recommend squirting a little bit of lemon juice onto your apple chunks to stop them from going brown..Nutritional Information is per roll, not including sandwich filling.