Potato Bread

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Bakers have been adding potatoes to bread since the 18th century. Originally, potato flour was used because it was cheaper than wheat or rye flour - especially in times when flour was scarce or there was a famine. 

By 1744, the first recipes for bread to which is added mashed potatoes appear. "This Root has often been employed, lie the Turnep, towards making Loaves of Bread in the scarce Times of Corn" ( The Modern Husbandman, Or, the Practice of Farming. William Ellis, London, 1744

In Germany potato bread contained spelt and rye flour. In Scotland, tattie scones were made from mashed potatoes and flour. In England, potato cakes appear as early as the 19th century and in Ireland, pratie oaten is made with mashed potatoes and rolled oats. 

In Europe and beyond, bakers found that adding mashed potatoes to dough helped to lighten the bread and make for a light, airy dough. It's part of the bakers' repertoire in Brazil, Hungary, Poland and the United States.  The Italians of Puglia even add it to their focaccia. 



225 gms cold mashed potato (nothing added....just boiled potato)

675 gms strong white bread flour

330 gms potato cooking water at room temperature

30 gms dried milk powder (or use liquid milk as part of your total liquid allowance)

60 gms sunflower oil (do NOT count this as part of the overall liquid if you are substituting liquid milk for dried powdered milk)

10 gms crushed sea salt

15 gms sugar (preferably - but not essential - dark sugar)

7 gms instant active yeast

a little milk to glaze the top of the loaf prior to baking and a few poppy seeds as decoration

These quantities will make ONE large or two SMALLER loaves - you can use 2lb and 1lb loaf tins or round tins.....it's up to you. It will also hold its shape if you wish to make it as a Cob. 


1. Add the dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix thoroughly

2. Add the potato and mix thoroughly

3. Fully incorporate the wet ingredients and bring together into a mixture. 

4. Tip the mixture onto a work surface and knead for about 10 minutes until you have a silky dough.

5. Place in an oiled bowl, cover and leave in a warm place for about an hour or until it has doubled in size. 

6. Tip out onto a floured surface. Knock back and shape to fit your prepared, oiled loaf tin(s).  

Each mix (as above) will produce enough dough for TWO x 2lb tins. I've doubled up so that I have four - that way I maximise the space in my oven

7.  Cover and return to a warm place for about an hour - until it's about an inch over the top of the loaf tin. 

8. Glaze the top of the loaf (loaves) with milk and, if you wish, scatter a few poppy seeds. 

9. Preheat the oven to 190⁰C and bake for 30 minutes. 

10. Remove when golden brown and hollow when tapped on the underneath. Cool on a rack. 

Happy baking....


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