About the basil....
We've got a bunch of big planters that we use in our never ending quest to have an herb garden. I'd always pictured myself going out into the back while preparing dinner and snipping a few herbs and casually throwing them into the pot. This usually works for chives or rosemary... but basil? Not so much. Just when I need a decent amount, the plant decides to go belly up.
Not this time, basil, not this time... I cannot tell you how happy I was to be able to skip outside with a pair of kitchen shears and snip away.
The combination of basil, garlic, Parmesan, and olive oil in this Pesto Bread adds just enough richness so that a slice stands on its own, but it's not really overwhelming. You can actually use this bread for sandwiches too.
Think of any sandwich on which you might like a drizzle of pesto... This bread marries the two flavors in these innocent looking sandwich loaves.
The bread is super easy to make, and the pesto flavors meld together when the bread is baking. I didn't include pine nuts, but you can add them to the pesto mixture if you like.
I did get a bit of a gap at the top of the swirl, but I think that's because I've been been working with super wet doughs lately, and am averse to adding too much flour. My dough was fairly sticky and kind of difficult to roll up. I think I needed to add a bit more flour to make rolling it tightly easier. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Pesto BreadAdapted from Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads
5 to 6 cups (22.5 to 27 ounces) bread flour
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast (I used a packet of Red Star Platinum)*
2 T sugar
2 tsp salt
2 C hot water, approximately 110 to 120 degrees F
2 T olive oil, plus more for the filling
1/4 C finely chopped fresh basil
1/3 C freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, minced
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk 2 cups of the flour and the rest of the dry ingredients.
- Add the hot water and 2 T of olive oil and stir with a large spoon or dough whisk.
- Add flour, 1/2 C at a time, and mix by hand between additions, until you have a shaggy mass.
- Move the bowl to the mixer and mix with the dough hook, adding flour until the dough clears the sides of the bowl. Knead for about 8 minutes.
- Place the dough into an oiled bowl or dough rising bucket, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 40 minutes.
- While the dough is rising, place the basil, Parmesan, and garlic into the bowl of a mini food processor and pulse a few times (or chop by hand). Place the mixture into a small bowl and cover with a small amount of olive oil.
- Oil two 8 inch by 4 inch bread pans.
- When the dough is doubled, divide it in half and press each half into a 7 inch by 12 inch rectangle.
- Brush the middle of each half with olive oil, leaving a one inch border on the sides. Divide the pesto mixture in half and spread each half over each rectangle. Roll the dough up, sealing the seams and ends, and place each log into the prepared pans. Cover loosely with plastic wrap.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. When the dough reaches the tops of the pans, remove the plastic wrap, and bake for 40 minutes.
- Cool on a wire rack in the pans for 10 minutes. Remove from the pans and cool completely.
If you’d like to add your bread to the collection with the Linky Tool this month, here’s what you need to do!
- 1. When you post your Twelve Loaves bread on your blog, make sure that you mention the Twelve Loaves challenge in your blog post; this helps us to get more members as well as share everyone's posts. Please make sure that your bread is inspired by the theme!
- 2. Please link your post to the linky tool at the bottom of my blog. It must be a bread baked to the Twelve Loaves theme.
- 3. Have your Twelve Loaves bread that you baked this August 2014, and posted on your blog by August 31, 2014.
Let's see what our #TwelveLoaves hosts baked this month:
- Thyme for Beer Bread by Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Pesto Quick Bread by Rhubarb and Honey
- Basil Buns by Rise of The Sourdough Preacher
- Herbed Skillet Cornbread by Magnolia Days
- Rosemary Grissini by Cake Duchess
- Rosemary Parmesan Flatbread Crisps by A Shaggy Dough Story
- Herbed Buttermilk Biscuits by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Keema Naan by Food Lust People Love
- Gluten Free Basil Parmesan Popovers by Simply Gourmet
- Pull-Apart Bread w/ Herbs & Seeds by girlichef
- Pesto Bread by Karen's Kitchen Stories
This post has been Yeastspotted