Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Walnut Raisin Rosemary Bread

If you've got a bunch of rosemary branches leftover from your Italian cooking, you'll be pleasantly surprise to know that you could use it for making a wonderful bread - thereby putting it to good use before it turns old. With a little bit of walnut, some raisins and of course your mix of flours, you'll be able to churn a nice looking bread which you and your family can enjoy.

We tried it ourselves and find it pretty appetizing. You'll need the following ingredients.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of yeast
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons of lukewarm water (you may need a bit extra in case its too dry)
  • 1 1/4 cups of bread flour
  • 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons of rye flour
  • 1 teaspoon of fine sea salt / table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped rosemary
Then once you've prepared those ingredients, you'll need to follow these steps:
  1. Begin by adding the yeast with the water.
  2. Mix and let it sit for 3 to 5 minutes, allowing the yeast to form up and come alive.
  3. While putting that aside, now mix all 3 of the flour types with salt and olive oil slowly while mixing it evenly with the flour.
  4. Pour the yeast mixture into it and mix it till dough forms altogether.
  5. Knead the dough while feeling whether or not its the exact consistency you want.
  6. Pour some flour over it to make it less sticky while transfer it to a plastic bag.
  7. Seal it in the plastic bag and ensure air is released as much as possible. This avoids crust build up and wait for it rise about 1 - 1 1/2 hours.
  8. Once that is done, take it out and flatten it to square and add your raisins, walnut and rosemary and knead the dough back to a round dough shape. Sprinkle extra flour over it if needed.
  9. Once that is done, place it on a plate that has some cornmeal on it and cover the dough with plastic.
  10. Allow it to rise for another half an hour.
  11. After that, slit the dough at the top according to the design of your liking to allow for the crust to crack and open up.
  12. Then place it into the oven at 420 - 450 F (depending on your oven type) for the first 30 minutes. Then reduce a notch (25 F) down for another 15 - 20 minutes.

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