Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Bread Baking Babes and Italian flavours

This month sweet babe Natashya ("Living in the kitchen with puppies") is waving her magic kitchen wand around and she picked us a savory recipe. These flavours just can't go wrong: tomato, basil and garlic.

I had planned to use all fresh things for the filling, but got distracted and due to lack of time I used frozen (homegrown) basil and (non-oil) sundried tomatoes, so I'm lacking some fibrant colours in my bread. Fresh garlic was at hand and for cheeses I used Gruyère and Pecorino.

The flavour was fantastic, summer on a plate and giving a real urge to be able to go out and  enjoy it in the garden. A delicious choice Natashya, thanks for this wonderful treat. I'll be making this again, then using cherry tomatoes and fresh basil to catch the wonderful colours in the bread too.

Yes, your mouth is watering, I know it! So bake along as a Bread Baking Buddy this month. Send your results and findings to our Kitchen of the month Babe Natashya and earn a Bread Baking Buddy Badge. Check out the breads the other babes made, as usual some twisted and tweaked the recipe, so get get inspired!
Tomato, basil, & garlic filled pane bianco
(Yield: 2 loaves)
(PRINT recipe)
113 g warm water
50 g sugar
4 tsp instant yeast
227 g warm low-fat milk
67 g extra-virgin olive oil
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons salt
723 g unbleached bread flour
1 (241 g) jar oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes 
1 large clove of garlic
170 g grated  (Italian) cheese, divided 
14 g chopped fresh basil

1) Combine the water, sugar, yeast, milk, olive oil, eggs, salt, and flour, and mix and knead by hand, stand mixer, or bread machine until you've made a cohesive, soft dough. If you're kneading in a stand mixer, it should take 5 to 7 minutes at second speed, and the dough should barely clean the sides of the bowl, perhaps sticking a bit at the bottom. In a bread machine (or by hand), it should form a smooth ball. Place the dough in a greased bowl, and turn to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double, about 45 minutes.

2) Meanwhile, thoroughly drain the sun-dried tomatoes; lay them on a paper towel to absorb any excess oil. Using kitchen shears, finely chop the tomatoes.

3) Line two baking sheets with parchment. Gently deflate the dough and divide it in half. Roll one piece into a 56 x 21 cm rectangle. Sprinkle on half the garlic, cheese, basil, and tomatoes.

4) Starting with one long edge, roll the dough into a log the long way. Pinch the edges to seal.

5) Place the log seam-side down on a baking sheet. Using kitchen shears, start 1 cm from one end and cut the log lengthwise down the center about 2 cm deep, to within 1 cm of the other end.

6) Keeping the cut side up, form an "S" shape. Tuck both ends under the center of the "S" to form a "figure 8"; pinch the ends together to seal. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double, 45 to 60 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough.

7) While the loaves are rising, preheat the oven to 180°C.

8) Bake the first loaf for 35 to 40 minutes. Tent the loaf with foil after 15 to 20 minutes to prevent over-browning. Bake the remaining loaf.

9) Remove loaves from their pans; cook on racks. Store any leftovers well-wrapped, at room temperature.

(recipe adapted from the King Arthur Website)


MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

What gorgeous height you got with this, mine spread out much more. LOVE those slices ... perfect for so many fillings/toppings!

Hanaâ said...

Very nice rise, Lien. Beautiful loaf!!

NKP said...

Wonderful! And that sliced shot is stunning! I love your idea of using fresh tomatoes in the summer. Perfect!

Heather S-G said...

Oh, I agree - I closed my eyes and took a bite and felt summer!! Your loaf turned out beautifully.

Elle said...

Your loaf is so beautiful I want to go make this again Lien...and the flavors are the essence of summer, you cleaver woman, you.

Elizabeth said...

Your loaf looks beautiful. And you're right; the flavour IS like summer.

I'm curious; did you have to add more water (and/or less flour) to ensure that the dough wasn't too stiff?

Lien said...

No Elizabeth I used the amount in the recipe, the dough was a bit sticky, not stiff at all.

Karen Baking Soda said...

Yes we need summer and if summer looks like this I am really happy! Beautiful Lien

Katie Zeller said...

Put that in my pack and get out the bike.... Looks perfect for my picnic!