It’s all about the ingredients

For the people of Crail, it is hard to believe that Smoked Fired Whole Foods has been open little more than a year. It has swiftly become part of the place it is were you can find all manner of foods and beautiful ceramics. No longer do they have to go to Dundee or Edinburgh to find that essential recipe ingredient and if it’s not on the shelves that day, owner Crispin Willis can usually source the missing item and get it in quickly.

Crispin: Customers should know exactly what’s inside what they buy, words, not numbers

Interior - Smoked Fired Whole Foods
Interior – Smoked Fired Whole Foods

The shop is a reincarnation of the local neighbourhood store that every town and village once had and now should have. But far from an old fashioned place stocked floor to ceiling and dark and murky, it’s bright light and airy with plenty of space to browse. Vanessa Bullick’s ceramics echo the colours of the sky and sea – the ingredients reflect our growing love of cuisines from all over the world and at the same time an interest in healthier eating. Opening 7 days was a big step for the pair, but it’s made a huge difference and locals and visitors alike appreciate it being open on a Sunday particularly. At the weekend, fresh bread is available much to shoppers delight.

Having grown up in a vegan/vegetarian household, Crispin went on to run a smallholding in North East Fife for 9 years. He was always certain that the quality and provenance of food was truly important. Nowadays, Crispin works closely with wholesalers SUMA and Greencity and is delighted that his customers suggest about 20% of what is stocked.

Let’s Bake!

A selection of seeds for the recipe
A selection of seeds for the recipe

Inspired by one of Vanessa’s bowls, a gorgeous soft duck egg blue, Doves Flour and Alford Oatmeal, I decided to make some Oatmeal seeded rolls. The beauty of this recipe is that you can use any seeds you might have in the cupboard (Smoked Fired Wholefoods have a great selection), just keep to the same weight. I used wholemeal flour which gives a wonderfully chewy texture. Use 50:50 strong white flour if you prefer it a little lighter.

The dough after its first hour prove
The dough after its first hour prove

Make this recipe on a day when you are at home most of the day. Each step only takes a little time, but you’ll need to leave it to prove whilst you get on with other things. If you happen to have a stand mixer like a Kenwood, do use it. I cannot say whether it would work in a bread maker! Please weigh all ingredients, preferably on a digital scale. Measuring jugs are not accurate. If you have one, a water spray/mister is a great help in getting steam into the oven.

Easy Oatmeal and Seed Rolls

500 gr Doves Wholemeal Organic Flour (or 250 gr each of Wholemeal and White Strong Flour)
350 ml water just warm to the touch
100 gr Alford oatmeal (or similar)
50 gr assorted seeds (eg pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, linseeds, poppy seeds or just one type)
10 gr sea salt
5 gr fresh yeast or 1 pack of Allinson Easybake Yeast.
10 gr honey (or 2 teaspoons)

  • Put the oatmeal and seeds into a bowl and add half the water. Leave to soak for 10 minutes.
  • Add the flour and salt and mix (yeast does not like being next to the salt); then add the yeast and honey.
  • Mix again then add the remaining water. At this stage you may need to add a little more water if it feels dry. It really will depend on the oatmeal and seeds you have used.
  • Knead until the dough comes together and smooths. This will take about 10 minutes. Alternatively, if you are using a stand mixer, mix for 3 minutes on slow speed, then 3 minutes at fast speed.
  • Cover and leave for an hour. As this is a wholemeal bread, it will not rise a lot.
  • Divide the dough into 80 gram pieces. You should get 12 to 13 pieces. Alternatively, if you prefer a loaf of bread, split the dough into 2.
The shaped bread and rolls
The shaped bread and rolls
  • Shape into rounds and leave for about 10 minutes to rest. Reshape a second time.
  • Dip the tops of the rolls/bread into a bowl of water briefly then into a bowl of oats to cover. Place the rolls on a tray or the loaves in a bread tin or the tray and leave to prove (expand) for a further one hour. Cover lightly with a cloth so they do not dry out.
Dipping the rolls into oatmeal after wetting the tops
Dipping the rolls into oatmeal after wetting the tops
  • Pre heat the oven to 220°C/Gas Mark 8. Place a tin of water in the bottom which will help make steam.
  • When the rolls have well risen, place them in the oven and mist with water.
  • Bake for 15-18 minutes or until evenly brown. If you are making loaves, these will take about 30 minutes to bake. Always check the underneath. This too should be brown.
  • Enjoy!
The oatmeal rolls in one of Vanessa's gorgeous ceramic bowls
The oatmeal rolls in one of Vanessa’s gorgeous ceramic bowls

Crail Food Festival – Local Business:

The Smoke Fired Whole Food Shop
11 High Street North
Crail KY10 3TA
Tel 01333 450233
Open 10 am to 6 pm Monday to Saturday, Noon to 5 pm Sunday.

Facebook: The Smoke Fired Whole Foods Shop
Twitter: @SmokeFiredFoods


Danielle Ellis
Website: Edinburgh Foody
Twitter: @EdinburghFoody
Google+: Edinburgh Foody