Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Homemade Rosemary Olive Oil Bread

Hello there!

Today we're talking bread. Specifically, Rosemary Olive Oil Bread. I love me some Rosemary Olive Oil Bread, and my local Smith's sells some La Brea variety. It is good. The only problem? It's $3 a loaf, and the loaves are small so I have to buy two if I want my family to be satisfied--i.e. enjoy any leftovers. I decided there must be a good recipe out there to make it myself. So I went looking.

I looked at several, and the only problem I saw with them was that they only called for 2 measly tablespoons of olive oil. That's how much I put in my French Bread recipe--not enough to earn the name Olive Oil in the title.

Then I found one at Cuisinart. There is 1/3 cup of olive oil in this recipe. Now we're talking!! The recipe calls for rolling the dough into a rope and forming a circle. As you can see from the pic, it makes a huge loaf that looks kind of like a bagel, although there's really not a hole in the middle, just an indentation. You could shape the dough any way you want, and I would recommend making it into two separate loaves. My loaf above is almost a foot in diameter--no joke!

The hardest part of this recipe is just the time. The dough rises three different times, so don't be in a hurry when you make it. Other than that, it's easy-peasy, especially if you hire your bread machine to help.

Rosemary Olive Oil Bread
adapted slightly from Cuisinart

1/3 cup Extra-virgin olive oil
2 1/2 t. dried rosemary

Combine olive oil and rosemary in bread machine bowl and let stand for at least 10 minutes. (I let it stand for 20.)
1 T. active dry yeast
2 1/2 t. salt
1 1/3 cup warm water
4 1/3 cup all purpose flour

Let the bread machine mix and knead the dough (or mix and knead by hand). Allow dough to rise for one hour. At this point, I removed the dough from my bread machine and transferred it to a large, oiled bowl. Punch the dough down and then cover and rise for another hour. Remove dough from bowl, punch it down and let it rest for 10 minutes. After it rests, roll the dough into a long, thick rope. Shape into a circle and firmly press the ends together to seal. Transfer to a lightly floured baking sheet (or use cornmeal if you have it). Cover the dough and let it rise until double, approximately 45-60 minutes. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Bake the bread for 10 minutes, and then turn the heat down to 375 degrees F and continue to bake for about 20-25 more minutes, or until bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove to a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before slicing.  I buttered my loaf while it was still warm, and sprinkled it with extra rosemary. That made for a softer crust, so don't butter yours if you want it crustier.

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