The intense flavors of Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and rosemary enhance this classic Italian loaf.
Yield: Serves 8
- 1 1/2 C. (350 ml) lukewarm water
- 1 T. yeast
- 1 T. sugar
- 2 tsp. salt
- 3-4 C. (375-500 g) bread flour
- 1/2-3/4 C. (125-200 ml) Kalamata olives, chopped or sliced
- 1/2-3/4 C. (125-200 ml) sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
- 1 T. crushed or chopped rosemary
1. Pour warm water over yeast and sugar. Let set long enough to make sure your yeast is alive. (It will bubble up a little if it is.)
2. Add salt and 1 C. flour; beat well with a wooden spoon or mixer to incorporate air.
3. Add enough remaining flour, 1 C. at a time until it forms a sticky, but managable dough. After adding about half of the dough, add in the olives, tomatoes, and rosemary. Knead lightly in your bowl or on a floured board for several minutes.
4. Set the ball of dough in a bowl and rub the top with oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel in a warm place for 2 hours. A good place to let it sit, away from drafts, is in your oven with just the light on. If you prefer, you can place your dough in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
5. Punch down the dough; let it rest for several minutes Place on a greased cookie before shaping it into an oblong loaf. sheet or a baking stone.
6. Let rise again until double in size, 1-2 hours, depending on whether your dough was chilled. Slash the top of the loaf with a sharp, serrated knife so the steam can escape while it’s baking, al- lowing for optimal rise. Bake at 400° F (200° C) for 25-30 minutes, depending how crusty you like it. To make it even crustier, pour hot water into a pan on the bottom shelf of your oven as soon as you put the bread in. The steam will create more of a crust.
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