In this guide, I will show you how to make How to make Nigerian agege bread. Agege bread is very popular in Nigeria.
It is a kind of bread that is very soft, chewy, stretchy and is loved because of its consistency. It’s usually none flavoured and with little sugar so you really get the great taste of just bread.
Originally found in Lagos state of Nigeria where it is often hawked fresh from the bakery alongside butter or beans, as an easy breakfast choice for morning commuters.
Read Also: How to Produce Bread in Nigeria
However, almost all states in Nigeria have their own version of the agege bread but they all have the texture and taste in common.
Agege bread is very affordable and versatile. It can be eaten alongside various foods and used in making local sandwiches.
Some bakeries use some commercial dough improvers and preservatives to give the right texture, dough improvers such as EDC 2000 or E-281 and E-202 which may not be very healthy for consumers.
For this recipe we’ll be using scalded flour as enhancer which is just as effective and healthier than any chemical enhancer.
Agege bread can be eaten alongside porridge beans, coconut, akara, ewa, agoyin, groundnuts, butter, mayonnaise, peanut butter and eggs [fried or boiled].
Ingredients [for one 9 by 4-inch loaf or three 3 by 4 inch loaves]
For the main dough
370g bread flour or plain flour [ bread flour makes a chewier loaf]
30g bread or plain flour for kneading
1 teaspoon sugar
7g instant dry yeast
140 ml lukewarm Water/Whole Milk, adjust as needed
50 gr Butter, at room temperature [cut into smaller pieces]
For the Scalded flour Dough enhancer
100g Bread Flour/Plain flour
100 ml boiling water
A bread pan or three
A plastic dough scraper
If you wish to use milk for your recipe, dissolve 2 heaped tablespoonfulS in 140ml of water or add 4 to 5 spoonfuls of evaporated milk in 130ml of water.
Milk makes the bread richer and softer
To Prepare The Scalded Flour Dough Enhancer
Pour all the boiling water into a bowl containing the 100g bread flour.
Stir the mixture quickly until its properly mixed then cover with a lid and leave to cool. This might take up to an hour depending on the weather.
[Don’t worry if the dough looks rough, after 1 hour the flour would have absorbed all the water and look smoother.]
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Now To Prepare The Main Dough
1. Sift the bread flour into a wide bowl.
Add the sugar, salt and the instant dry yeast, and mix well.
[Test the potency of your yeast by; combining the yeast, water and sugar together in a bowl. Leave for 10 minutes or until it starts to foam, form bubbles and look creamy. Then add it to the flour, but if it doesn’t foam, you know the yeast is bad. If the yeast is bad then you’ll definitely need to get a new batch]
2. Make a hole in the center of the bowl and pour in the prepared scalded flour and gradually add the lukewarm water/milk.
Mix together until you get a slightly sticky dough. Let the dough sit for 10 minutes, so as to allow the flour absorb the water used.
3. Transfer the sticky dough, onto a lightly floured table.
Knead for about 20 minutes, using the ”stretch, slap and fold method(in this method the sticky dough is stretched, folded over itself, lifted up and thrown back down onto the table repeatedly until the dough is less sticky and elastic)you’ll need a scraper to help bring the sticky dough together while kneading.
The dough will be very sticky at first, but keep on kneading, and incorporating as little flour as possible. Too much flour will result in a hard bread. So resist the urge to add more flour. Use the scraper to remove sticky flour from your fingers.
4. Knead the butter into the dough for another 20 minutes until well incorporated and you get a soft, smooth and stretchy dough that does not break easily when stretched. You could heat up your butter a bit to make it easier to incorporate into the dough.
This is where you have to do a lot of work kneading the dough, at this stage you’ll notice the difference in the texture of the dough
If you have a dough/ bread machine, you can use it.
Knead on medium speed for 30 minutes, using the dough hook, until you get a smooth and stretchy dough. For a food processor, knead for 3 to 5 minutes and check the doughs elasticity every 30 seconds.
5. Form the now elastic dough into a ball, place in a greased bowl, cover with a lid or damp towel and leave to rise until doubled in size (takes about 1 hour or more, depending on the weather).
6. After 1 hour, ‘’punch’’ down on the risen dough and transfer to the work surface.
Divide the dough into small rough balls to fit into your pan then cover the balls with a damp cloth and leave to rest for 10 minutes, while you grease the pan you’ll be using.
7. Shape each of the balls into a long roll and place in the greased pan. Feel free to get creative with this process as the dough is now sticky and might be difficult to maneuver neatly.
8. Place the shaped dough into the pan, cover again with the damp cloth or lid and let it rise again for another 1 hour or until it doubles in size or almost reaching the top of the pan.
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9. Preheat the oven for 5 minutes at 180ºC (370ºF).
10. Finally brush the risen bread with egg wash(raw egg+2 tablespoon water) or melted butter(to give it glow/shine) and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until done(when it is golden brown).
Take out of the oven, leave to cool a bit and transfer onto a rack. Now your very own home made agege bread is ready to be enjoyed.
This recipe can also be used for making this bread commercially but alterations have to be made on the measurement of ingredients used.Click here to see the latest work from home jobs
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