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Aug 11, 2013

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil

This sourdough rosemary bread with olive oil is made with both natural and commercial yeast. If you'd like to skip the commercial yeast in the final dough for a stronger sourdough flavor, just allow for a longer rise time.

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil

This bread is wonderful dipped in olive oil and balsamic with some ground pepper, or even made into garlic cheese toast. It also makes excellent garlic croutons. The crust is super crunchy, and the bread itself is so full of the flavor of rosemary.

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil

If you don't have a sourdough starter, you can substitute a poolish. Mix about 7 ounces of water with 7 ounces of flour, add a 1/4 tsp. of instant yeast, stir, cover, and let the mixture sit for about 8 hours at room temperature and then overnight in the refrigerator.

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil

Sourdough Rosemary Bread with Olive Oil Recipe

Makes two 20 ounce loaves

2 ounces warm water (105 to 110 degrees F)
1 tsp active dry yeast
14 ounces 100% hydration sourdough starter
8 ounces room temperature water
3 T. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 C fresh rosemary, chopped
15.3 ounces unbleached all purpose flour
2.8 ounces whole wheat flour
1 T plus 2 tsp Kosher salt


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm water and yeast and let it sit for about 5 minutes until foamy.
  2. Add the starter, the water, olive oil, and rosemary and mix with you hands, a dough whisk, or the paddle attachment for a couple of minutes. 
  3. Add the flour and salt and mix on low with the dough hook until it comes together. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a bowl scraper and adjust the hydration with extra water or flour. 
  4. Knead on medium low for about 7 minutes. Let the dough rest, covered with plastic wrap, for 20 minutes. Knead for another couple of minutes. The dough should be soft, tacky, and not very stiff. 
  5. Put the dough into an oiled bowl or dough rising bucket and let it rise, covered with plastic wrap, for one hour. After and hour, deflate the dough by folding it over itself from all four "sides" and then placing it seam side down in the oiled bowl. Cover and refrigerated the dough for 8 to 16 hours. 
  6. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature, about 2 hours. 
  7. Flour two nine inch brotforms/bannetons (see the photo in this post) or bowls. 
  8. Divide the dough into 2 pieces and gently form them into boules. Be careful not to deflate the dough too much. Place them seam side up in the baskets/bowls and cover with plastic wrap. 
  9. Allow to rise for about 75 to 120 minutes, until doubled. 
  10. In the meantime, place two cast iron Dutch ovens into the oven and preheat it to 450 degrees F.
  11. When the dough is ready, carefully remove the pans from the oven, turn the dough out into the pans, slash, cover, and return them to the oven. 
  12. Bake, covered, for 20 minutes, carefully remove the lids from the pans, lower the oven temperature to 400 degrees F, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer, until the bread interior reaches 200 degrees F. (Note: Sometimes I will move the breads to a sheet pan at about 25 minutes to prevent burning of the bottom of the loaf.)
  13. Cool on a wire rack. 
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Would you like to comment?

  1. Hi Karen,another beautiful bread motivating me to try my own version soon. Loved the addition of rose mary.

    1. Namita, I can't wait to see what you bake!

  2. Beautiful bread Karen! Rosemary has got to be one of my favorite herbs to add to a loaf of bread. Wonderful!

    1. Thanks so much Yvonne! Crazy about it myself.

  3. Thanks for the recipe. If I understand the recipe correctly, you use 1tablespoon of salt plus 2 tsp. Similar recipes call for just 1 tsp. I would recommend backing off on the salt to 1 tablespoon or slightly less. My attempt turned out to be over-powering salty. The olive oil and rosemary is nice.

    1. Hi kgbnsf. The salt amount is correct, but it's kosher salt, which is more coarse than regular salt. If you use regular salt, I'd recommend weighing the salt. Use 16 grams or .56 ounces.

  4. Question: In step 3 what do you mean by adjust the hydration with water or flour?

    1. That just means, if it feels too dry, add a little water, or if it's too wet, add a little flour.


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