Image © Cynthia Nelson
“Cassava bread, Aniseed bread and regular white loaves of plait bread are what Guyanese prefer to eat with their Pepperpot. The spice combination of the Aniseed bread and the cinnamon, cloves and ginger from the Pepperpot makes each piece of sauce-sodden bread a joy to eat. This is like my cheater’s version to the classic Aniseed bread.” – Cynthia Nelson, Tastes Like Home
– 5 or 6-quart oven proof dish with cover or a cast iron pot with a lid. If you don’t have either, use a deep dish and cover with foil.
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
3 tsp. instant yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. fine table salt
1 Tbsp. anise seeds
3 oz. vegetable shortening
1 cup whole milk (you may need more or less depending on your location and quality of flour)
Mix together the flour, yeast, sugar and salt and set aside.
Add shortening, anise seed and milk to a small saucepan and heat gently to melt the shortening. Remove from heat and let mixture cool to 110 to 115 degrees F.
Pour the milk-shortening mixture into the flour and mix to form a dough. Turn dough on to lightly floured work surface and knead for 12 minutes until smooth.
Shape dough however you like. I braided the dough and then formed it into a circle.
Lightly brush the dish with oil and transfer the dough. Cover with lid or foil and let rise in a warm place for 20 minutes.
Transfer the covered dish to the oven and turn the heat to 400 degrees F. Bake covered for 40 minutes then remove the cover and bake for 5 minutes or until the bread is nicely browned.
Remove from the oven and rest for 7 to 10 minutes before removing bread from baking vessel. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature before cutting into bread.
– Time begins once you add the pot to the cold oven and immediately turn on the heat.
– There is no need to preheat the oven.