‘Ome ‘n’ Onion Bread…

OK, It’s actually Roman Onion Bread but that’s just not as catchy!

This is one of my favourite flavoured breads to make and it’s so simple. This bread is great for a lunch or supper or when your entertaining as a tear and share bread. We quite often have it as an accompaniment to antipasti or as our Kids call it ‘Picky tea!’

Fresh rosemary really does taste the best for this. If you haven’t got any growing in your own garden, ask a neighbour as I’m sure someone will have some. Rosemary has to be one of the most common herbs that people have growing in their garden, the sad thing is probably about 90% of those people never use it!




‘Ome ‘n’ Onion Bread.

  • 500g strong white bread flour
    A good pinch of salt
    1 tablespoon of rapeseed oil or olive oil plus extra for drizzling
    2 heaped teaspoons dried yeast
    1 teaspoon sugar
    2 large white onions, peeled and finely sliced
    1 large sprig of Rosemary leaves removed and roughly chopped (or 1 tbsp dried rosemary)
    Salt & Pepper

Dissolve the sugar in roughly 50ml of warm water. Add the yeast and leave to activate for 10 – 15 minutes.

In a large bowl combine the flour and salt and make a well in the middle. Add the oil and the activated yeast mixture. Combine the mixture, adding a little more water if necessary, to form a slightly sticky dough.

On a floured surface work the dough, stretching it away from you to make a pliable, springy dough then knead back to a ball.

Place the dough in an oiled bowel and leave to rise, covered, for an hour. After an hour knock the dough back and leave to rise for another hour (although if you are short of time the dough could be used straight away).

Pre-heat your oven to 230°C gas mark 8.

Oil a heavy baking sheet or shallow, ovenproof tin, it wants to be at least 30 x 40 cm.

Take the dough out of the bowel and give a quick knead. Flatten out the dough with your hands then place on your baking sheet/tin. Flatten, stretch and pull your bread to the shape you want it, It wants to be roughly a couple of cm thick.

Give the dough a little drizzle of oil rub over the surface. Lay the onions on top of the bread leaving a little space around the edge. Drizzle more oil over the onions then sprinkle your rosemary and seasoning over the top.

Place in the oven and bake for 15 – 20 minutes. Take out of the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes, resisting the urge to pick at the sweet, soft onion. Slice, serve and enjoy!

Not All Pirates Eat Meat!

I was winding an old friend up a couple weeks ago who happens to be a Vegan, he also bears an uncanny resemblance to Jack Sparrow, especially when he gets the full costume on…come on, stop swooning ladies!

Jack Sparrow aka Steve

Anyway to make it up to him I promised I would put a post on the Blog that featured a Vegan recipe. So Steve… ahem, sorry, Captain Jack ‘A-Hoy mi seafarin’ shipmate. Shiver mi timbres an get ya cooking pot at the ready!”

Ok it might not be Salmagundi (every pirates favourite) but it is Vegan and it’s packed full of protein which sometimes can be lacking in a Vegan diet

‘Ome Made Houmous (Hummus to our friends over the pond…) with Pitta Bread & Turkish Salad

Houmous is dead easy to make and so much better than shop bought. My recipe makes a lot! It’s easy to halve or quarter the recipe though. Or you could freeze the extra. It will keep in the fridge for up to ten days providing its in a sealed container.

For the Houmous you will need:

500g dried chick peas soaked overnight (you can use canned)

1 jar Tahini (300g)

About 10 cloves of garlic (or more or less depending on your taste) chopped    houmous 3

Zest & juice of of two lemons

About 200ml olive oil or sunflower will work fine too

Plenty of slat and freshly ground black pepper

Ground paprika

To Make:

Drain and rinse your chickpeas. Place in a deep saucepan and cover well with water. bring to the boil and boil for ten minutes. Remove any scum that floats on the surface.

After your chickpeas have boiled for ten minutes, turn down to a simmer and cook for another 45 minutes or until tender.

Once cooked, drain and let the water evaporate from them while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

Houmous 1

Once your chickpeas have cooled a little mix all the ingredients, except the paprika, in a large bowl and put through a blender or food processor or if your a true pirate you can use a masher or the back of a fork, it will just end up a little more course. If the mixture is a little dry and thick you can add a little more oil or some cooled down boiled water.

houmous 4

Once your Houmous is ready put into a serving bowl and sprinkle with a little paprika.


For the Pitta Breads you will need:

(makes 8)

350g strong white bread flour

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons dried yeast

2 tablespoons oil (olive or sunflower)

250 ml warm water

1 teaspoon sugar


To make;


Mix the sugar yeast and water together in a jug. After 10 – 15 minutes it should have a nice foamy head.


Mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Add the olive oil, make a well in the centre of the flour and pour your water/yeast in. mix together to form a soft dough. take out the bowl and give a knead for a good 5 minutes using a little more flour if the dough is still sticky.

Put back in the bowl and cover with a damp cloth or cling film. Leave for an hour to rise.

Put your oven on the hottest setting it will go on

Once ready knock back the dough and knead again until smooth. Divide the dough into eight balls and then roll each out into an oval about 1/4” thick. Place on a greased baking sheet and leave to prove for 10 minutes.

Cook the pittas in the pre-heated oven for about 1 – 1 1/2 minutes each side. When ready wrap the Pittas in a clean tea towel to keep warm.


To make the Turkish Salad

Finely shred 1/2 a white cabbage. Grate one or two carrots. Slice one medium sized onion.

Mix the cabbage, carrot and onion in a bowl. Sprinkle approximately two teaspoons of salt and the same of sugar over the salad and mix again.

Squeeze the juice of one lemon or a tablespoon of bottled over the salad and a couple dashes of white wine vinegar. Give the salad a good grind of black pepper and a pinch of ground cumin., mix again and the salad is ready to serve. It will keep for a good five days in the fridge.


To serve split your warmed Pitta breads and spread liberally with the houmous. Pack in as much salad as you can. You know have a Vegetarian/Vegan equivalent of a Kebab! You can of course sprinkle some Chilli Sauce (in our case, ‘Ome Made) over and it does benefit from some yoghurt and mint (but then that wouldn’t be vegan).

So there you have it. ‘Ome Mades first ever Vegan recipe.

“Aaaaar enjoy mi scurvey kerr!”houmous 2



Introducing…. Bob!

We have a new addition to the household!

Born on the 27th February 2014 we would like to introduce you to …. Bob!

Birth of Bob 2

Bob is a sourdough bread starter, or will be providing I can keep him alive for long enough!

I’ve made bread starters before but I’ve never kept them after they’ve made their first batch of bread. Bob however I intend to feed and nurture and see how long I can keep him going.

I have to say I’m not feeling confident. You see it’s all a bit scientific. Flour to water ratios, temperature, how much flour to feed, blah blah blah. I can’t be doing with all that so I’ll be truthful and say… I’m winging it!

For those of you who fancy having a go at ‘winging it’ too you will need some flour. I used some  strong white flour and a little malted grain. I used the malted grain because it has whole grain in it which, if I understand right, has more of the natural yeasts present which are needed to get your bread going. The malted grain also contained rye which again is supposed to make a good starter.

I put the flour in a tall kilner jar and then added water to make a paste the consistency of single flour. I then put the lid on and left it.

A couple of hours later he looked like this…

Birth of Bob

This is not good…

If I was a puritan I should probably have ditched the mixture and started again. However I’m ‘winging it’ so I chucked in a bit more flour, gave it a mix and left it.

On day 2 it looked better but still had water separating so I added more flour again. It did smell nice, a bit like beer, which is good… I think?

On day 3 he’s looking like this…

Bob day 3 full

Now to me that is looking quite healthy…

I guess only time will tell, watch this space…

‘Ome-Made Pizza

So, I was going to do a post on pizzas at some point but not necessarily now… and then I get a tweet from someone saying they tried following my pizza recipe but it didn’t quite turn out right?

Right, so which pizza recipe was that then because I don’t recall putting one on here!

Maybe they were looking at someone else’s site?

No worries though! “I’ll put a fail safe recipe on the blog for you” I tweeted back.

So here is my guide to making a basic pizza, that’s a piece of bread topped with tomato sauce and cheese, I’ll save the poncey ones for later!

pizza blog 2

We will start with the pizza base. You can make a pizza base from a basic bread recipe. So if you have a favourite bread recipe that you are comfortable with try using that first. Otherwise give this one a go.

Pizza Base recipe (enough for 3 medium or two large pizzas)

You will knead… sorry need!

  • 500g Strong white bread flour (you simply can’t use plain flour, well you can but it will go crumbly round the edges, soggy in the middle and just won’t be right!)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoon dried yeast (or 1 x 7g sachet)
  • 1 ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 ½ table spoon olive oil (or sunflower/vegetable oil if you have no olive)
  • 320ml/½ pint lukewarm water


  • in a jug or bowl add your sugar and yeast to the water. give a quick mix and leave for 10 – 15 minutes (it should start to foam and bubble, if it doesn’t your water was possibly too hot, your yeast is old or your water is too cold. Don’t be tempted to dissolve your salt in the water as salt will kill the yeast)
  • in a large bowl (use a larger bowl than what you think… Trust me!) mix your flour and salt and then drizzle your oil in.
  • make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in your yeast/water mixture. Pull in some of the flour into the liquid to form a thick paste and then leave for another 10-15 minutes to allow the mixture to ‘Sponge’.
  • Now mix in the rest of the flour. You should end up with a nice smooth dough. If the mix looks too dry add a little bit of water. If the mixture looks too wet and is sticky add a little more flour at a time until it you get a nice consistency.
  • You now have to knead the dough. Sprinkle a work surface and the dough with either bread flour or even better fine ground semolina (semolina gives a lovely silky finish). Put the dough on the work surface, hold the near edge of the bread with one hand and with the other push the dough away from you. The idea is that you are ‘stretching’ the mixture. At first the dough will pull apart but after 5 minutes or so the mixture will become more elastic as the gluten develops. If the mixture is still sticky keep sprinkling with flour (or semolina)
  • when you have a nice stretchy dough knead it into a nice smooth ball rub some oil over the surface put back into the bowl and either cover the bowl with a clean tea towel or cling film. The dough now needs to rise for about an hour.

Step 2 Making the tomato/pizza sauce

You will need

  • 2 fat cloves of garlic chopped
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 100ml/3½fl oz white wine or cider vinegar
  • 3 teaspoon sugar
  • small tin (140g) tomato puree
  • 1 tin (400g) chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • pinch of dried thyme
  • seasoning to taste


  • Gently fry the garlic and onion ’till soft.
  • Add the vinegar and sugar, turn up heat and reduce the liquid until it’s a thick syrup.
  • stir in the tomato paste and fry for a minute.
  • add all the other ingredients, stir to mix and let cook for 20 minutes.

Assembling The Pizza 

  • Knock back the risen dough (knock the air out of it by giving it a brief knead) and divide the dough into two or three depending on how many pizzas you want to make.
  • On a work surface dusted with semolina (or flour) flatten a ball of dough into a circle with the palm of your hand. Roll out the dough in a rough circle to just short of the size you want it, it wants to be about 5mm thick for a nice thin crispy pizza. If you want a thicker pizza leave the dough a little thicker.
  • Place the dough on whatever you are cooking it on. I use either pizza screens (with the holes in) or a good heavy baking sheet is fine. If using a baking sheet grease it with oil and give it a dusting of semolina or flour first.
  • Pull the dough disk to the shape and size you want. If you have made a nice elastic dough it will keep resisting, push it down onto the sheet gently to help it along.
  • You are now ready to top. First of all you want your tomato sauce. Put a dollop in the middle and work out towards the edges leaving about 1cm free.
  • If you are just using Mozzarella cheese (you will need about 500g/1lb in total) the cheese can be put  on. If you are topping with anything else then sprinkle a layer of cheese on the pizza before putting your other ingredients on (don’t overload the pizza!) and then finish with some more cheese.
  • to finish the pizza off give it a grind of black pepper, sprinkle with some dried oregano and then give it a light drizzle of olive oil.
  • If you like a thicker base allow the pizza to stand for 40 minutes to allow the base to prove again. If you like a thinner and more traditional Italian style base then put in an oven at 220°C/428°F (if using a fan oven lower the temperature to 200°C/392°F).
  • Give the pizza 12 minutes and then turn and give another 10 – 15 minutes. When golden and bubbling take out the oven. leave for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

I sometimes brush some melted garlic butter over the pizza about 5 minutes before it comes out of the oven. This gives it an amazing finish!

Ome Made pizza blog

As for toppings? Anything goes. Our favourites are sliced chilli peppers, black olives, chorizo, sliced red onion and thinly sliced mushroom (not too many, they’ll make the pizza soggy). I tend not to put fresh tomato on as again it tends to make the pizza soggy.

You don’t have to use processed, grated mozzarella either. Try tearing strips off fresh mozzarella for the top of your pizza (don’t worry about having areas with no cheese on, we prefer them that way!). Goats cheese makes a lovely topping too, try a goats cheese and rocket topping for a sophisticated touch!

Happy Pizza making and eating!