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The origin of Tapalapa bread can be traced to West Africa, specifically countries like Benin, Togo, and Ghana. It is a significant part of the culinary heritage of these regions and is often enjoyed as a staple food.
Variations of the Tapalapa recipe exist, and individual preferences may lead to different adaptations in different regions.
However, here is a basic recipe for Tapalapa bread:
- 500g all-purpose flour
- 1 packet (7g) active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 300ml lukewarm water
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter
- Preheat your oven to 220°C (425°F).
- Proof the yeast: In a small bowl, mix the yeast, sugar, and a couple of tablespoons of warm water. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes until it becomes frothy. This indicates that the yeast is active.1 teaspoon sugar, 300ml lukewarm water, 1 packet (7g) active dry yeast
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Create a well in the center.500g all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon salt
- Pour the activated yeast mixture and the vegetable oil or melted butter into the well.2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter
- Gradually incorporate the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients while adding the lukewarm water little by little.
- Knead the dough: Turn the mixture onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. You can also use a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment for this step.
- Form a ball with the dough and place it back into the mixing bowl. Cover it with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap.
- Let the dough rise: Allow the dough to rise in a warm place for about 1 to 2 hours or until it has doubled in size.
- Punch down the risen dough to release any air bubbles, and then shape it into the desired size and shape for your Tapalapa loaves or rolls.
- Place the shaped dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Score the tops of the loaves with a sharp knife or make cuts with scissors to create patterns.
- Bake the Tapalapa bread in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes or until the bread turns golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- Once baked, remove the bread from the oven and allow it to cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving.