Hops Bread

Hops bread are Trinidadian bread rolls that have a great crusty top and are soft and fluffy on the inside. They’re also made with very little sugar which is great.

Note: I have revised this recipe to provide the measurements for the ingredients in weights. The volume measurements are still included in the recipe. However, I highly recommend that you weigh the ingredients as it’s more accurate, which will ensure that your hops bread turns out well.

Tips for Successfully Making Hops Bread

  • Check the best before date of the yeast that you’re using and make sure that it hasn’t expired. Using yeast that isn’t fresh or has expired will lead to your dough taking too long to rise or not rising at all.

  • It’s important to use liquid that is the right temperature when making hops bread (and other bread) as yeast are living organisms and liquid temperature influences their activity. For dry yeast (i.e. instant and active dry yeast) the liquid temperature should be between 110°F – 115°F (43°C – 46°C) when dissolving the yeast in the liquid.

  • If the liquid is too hot, it will destroy the yeast. If it’s too cold, it will slow down the activity of the yeast.

  • This hops bread recipe uses water as the only liquid. Using water as the only liquid makes bread that has a super crispy crust and a wheaty taste. If you modify the recipe to use other liquid besides water, it will change the taste and texture of the bread so keep that in mind.

  • If you end up with sticky dough, it could be that you didn’t use the right amount of flour. The correct way to measure flour is to scoop the flour with a measuring cup and scrape off the excess flour from the top of the measuring cup so that the flour is even with the rim of the measuring cup.

  • If your dough is sticky due to not using enough flour, you can correct this by adding a little bit of flour at a time until the dough is the right consistency. However, using flour that’s too old or over kneading the dough can also result in sticky dough, so make sure that you’re using fresh flour and not over kneading the dough.

  • The dough for this bread takes about 10-12 minutes to fully knead; you’ll know that the dough is kneaded well enough when it’s smooth on the outside, is not too sticky, and springs back when you use your finger to press on it.

  • I also recommend using the windowpane test to make sure that the dough is fully kneaded. Here’s a video that I think does a really good job of teaching how to do the test.

  • If the dough doesn’t pass the windowpane test after 10-12 minutes of kneading, knead it again for about 2 minutes and try the test again.

How to Make Hops Bread

To make hops bread, combine 800 g (6 cups) of all-purpose flour, 8 g (1 packet; 2¼ tsp) of instant yeast, 8 g (2 tsp) of sugar, 6 g (1 tsp) of salt, and 28 g (2 tbsp) of softened butter in a mixing bowl. Add 532 g (2½ cups) of warm water to the flour mixture a bit at a time and mix it using a spoon to form the flour into a sticky dough. Measure out 40 g (1⁄3 cup) of all-purpose flour. Use some of the flour to lightly flour a clean surface.

Note: In baker’s math, all the ingredients must be weighed in the same unit of measurement. So, water should be measured in grams not milliliters. Also, for those who like to use baker’s math, this bread has a hydration of about 63% (i.e., ratio of total water to total flour).

Turn the dough onto the floured surface and knead it, slowly adding the remaining flour until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky but still elastic; you might not need to use all the remaining flour to get to this point. It will take about 10-12 minutes to fully knead the dough. Use the windowpane test to ensure that the dough is fully kneaded. If the dough does not pass the test, knead it again for about 2 minutes and try the test again. You can take short rest breaks between kneading the dough if you get tired.

Grease a large bowl with a generous amount of oil and place the dough in the bowl. Turn the dough around in the bowl to grease the dough on all sides; end with the dough seam side down in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen cloth to keep the dough from drying out. Place the bowl in a warm area and leave the dough for 40 minutes or until it doubles in size.

Punch down the dough to release air out of it, then separate the dough into 12 equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball with your hands, grease your hands with a bit of oil if the dough starts to stick to your hands. Put the dough balls in a greased baking pan, cover the pan with a damp kitchen cloth, place the pan in a warm area for 40 minutes to allow the dough balls to double in size.

I wanted my hops bread to come out looking like traditional bread rolls so I used a baking pan that would keep the rolls tightly pressed together. If you want your hops bread to be less pressed together and round on each side like the classic hops bread shape, then use a big baking pan that keeps the rolls more apart from each other.

Bake the bread in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) for 25-30 minutes or until the rolls are golden brown. Let the bread cool completely or until it’s just barely warm before serving it. Hops bread is typically eaten with butter or cheese but I like to have it with a dipping sauce of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. The bread tends to harden within 3-5 days so plan to finish eating these rolls within that time frame. Enjoy!

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hops bread
Print Recipe
3.85 from 19 votes

Hops Bread

This is a great recipe for mouthwatering Trinidadian hops bread. This recipe makes hops bread that are nice and crispy on the outside and perfectly soft on the inside.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Resting Time1 hr 20 mins
Total Time2 hrs
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Caribbean
Servings: 12 bread rolls
Calories: 276kcal

Ingredients

  • 840 g all-purpose flour (6⅓ cups; divided)
  • 8 g instant yeast (1 packet)
  • 8 g sugar (2 tsp)
  • 6 g salt (1 tsp)
  • 28 g butter (2 tbsp; softened)
  • 532 g warm water (2½ cups)

Instructions

  • In a mixing bowl, combine 800 g (6 cups) of the all-purpose flour, instant yeast, sugar, salt, and butter.
  • Add the water to the flour mixture a bit at a time. Mix the water with the flour using a spoon and form the flour into a sticky dough.
  • Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough, slowly adding the remaining flour to the dough until it’s smooth but still elastic; you might not need to use all the remaining flour to get to this point.
  • It will take about 10-12 minutes to fully knead the dough. You can take short rest breaks between kneading the dough if you get tired.
  • Use the windowpane test to ensure that the dough is fully kneaded. If the dough does not pass the test, knead it again for about 2 minutes then try the test again.
  • Grease a large bowl with oil. Place the dough in the bowl and turn it around in the bowl to grease the dough on all sides; end with the dough seam side down in the bowl.
  • Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen cloth and leave the bowl in a warm area for 40 minutes or until the dough doubles in size.
  • Punch down the dough then separate the dough into 12 equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball and put the dough balls into a greased baking pan.
  • Cover the pan with a damp kitchen cloth, place the pan in a warm area for 40 minutes or until the dough balls double in size.
  • Bake the hops bread in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) for 25-30 minutes or until the rolls are golden brown.
  • Let the bread cool completely or until it's just barely warm before serving it.

Notes

  • In baker’s math, all the ingredients must be weighed in the same unit of measurement. So, water should be measured in grams not milliliters.

Nutrition

Calories: 276kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 19mg | Potassium: 82mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 58IU | Vitamin C: 0.002mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 3mg

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7 Comments

  • Reply
    Nazrana Dhanoolal
    July 6, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    2 stars
    I am from Trinidad and this is no way close to what I see in the photo. Very disappointed Since I used exact ingredients. The first kneading was dry no stickiness. I taste good but was very heavy. I checked the yeast just as you said and all the ingredients were perfect but not like the one in the pic

    • Reply
      Meals by Mavis
      July 6, 2022 at 9:00 pm

      Hi Nazrana, I’m sorry to hear that this didn’t turn out well for you. If the bread was heavy/dense, then it means the gluten was underdeveloped. That happens when the dough isn’t kneaded well enough. You can check how well you’ve kneaded the dough by doing the windowpane test. I haven’t made a video for that, but here’s one on YouTube that I think is really good; click here. I will add this to the instructions in the recipe.

      Also, if the dough was too dry, then you might have overpacked the flour when you were measuring it in the cup. Things like high altitude and warm kitchen temperatures can also lead to drier doughs. Basically, bread making is very susceptible to changes in the environment, how well you knead the dough, and how well you measure the ingredients. So, when you’re making bread, it’s not as easy as just following the recipe. You have to take your kitchen environment and the other factors I’ve mentioned into account and make adjustments as needed. So, if the dough is too dry, add about a tablespoon more water and test it out. I will add weight measurements for the ingredients for this recipe as measuring by weight is more accurate than measuring by cups.

  • Reply
    Christine
    May 17, 2021 at 12:52 pm

    5 stars
    Hi Mavis, I tried making these for the first time today! I followed your recipe quite closely, except I halved it and used less flour (I think our Canadian flour is pretty high in protein)—I probably could have used even less since my dough was not very sticky. Also, for the 1 packet of yeast I used 8 g active dry yeast. They came out really well and my kids and Trini husband gave them enthusiastic thumbs up. I’m sure I’ll make them again. Thank you for the recipe! [Reposted because I forgot to rate.]

    • Reply
      Christine
      May 17, 2021 at 12:53 pm

      I mean, I halved the recipe, so really I used 8 g yeast. 🙂

    • Reply
      Meals by Mavis
      May 17, 2021 at 6:32 pm

      Hi Christine,

      Thanks for letting me know about your experience with the recipe and for taking the time to rate it. I think your modifications will be really helpful for those who want to halve the recipe. I’m glad that you liked the recipe and it got your kids and Trini husband’s approval! That makes me very happy. I didn’t know that about Canadian flour. I wonder why that is.

  • Reply
    Jerry
    February 25, 2021 at 9:12 am

    1 star
    This is not the original flaky hops bread . It is a bun or dinner roll

    • Reply
      Meals by Mavis
      February 25, 2021 at 7:32 pm

      Hi Jerry,

      The recipe makes flaky hops that are shaped to look like dinner rolls. If you don’t want them to look like dinner rolls, you just need to keep the dough balls further apart when baking them. I’ve discussed this in the recipe post above.

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