During the Thanksgiving period, I was looking for some great bread to make a panini, or simply eat. This year instead of buying a nice rustic loaf from the breadsmith, I decided to make my own. Bring on the Rosemary bread. This took a few hours, and an overnight process but well worth it. To sum things up, my wife and I ate a loaf as soon as it came out of the oven, with the simplicity of butter. This was outrageous in flavor, however the panini was triple that, especially with Gouda cheese. Let’s get started.
This is my first time making bread, however this is definitely not the first time I have used the same ingredients; flour, yeast, and oil. The cool thing here is to make an agent prior to making the dough and going through that process. The agent is funky. The breakdown:
Ingredients – The Starter (Start the day before)
- 1 Cup Warm Water
- 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 Cups all-purpose flour
To make the starter, combine all the ingredients in your electric mixer. Beat at a medium speed until the mixture pulls from the sides. Transfer to a plastic container, cover with a towel at room temperature, and leave out overnight.
Building the dough is next.
Ingredients – The Dough
- 2 Tablespoons active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup of the starter (above)
- 2 cups of warm water
- 3 Tablespoons of olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons of chopped, fresh rosemary
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 4 cups of all-purpose flour
To make the dough, use the mixer and combine the yeast, starter, and warm water in a bowl. Beat this until it is milky white and begins to foam, roughly five minutes. Change over to a dough hook, then add the olive oil, rosemary, salt, and 3-4 cups of the flour. Continue to beat this until it pulls from the sides of the bowl. Add more flour if the dough gets too soft. Continue to use the dough hook for roughly 10 minutes or so.
Shape the dough into a ball, and place in a lighly oiled bowl, making sure to coat. Cover with a lighltly dampened warm towel, and let rise for a couple of hours.
Punch down the dough, divide into two pieces, and shape into loaves, placing on a baking pan. Cover again and let it rise until doubled for another hour.
Preheat the oven to 425, make a few slashes across the bread, and bake until it is golden brown, roughly 45 minutes. Take off and let cool on racks, if you have them.
Serve with pasta, salads, sandwiches, or even plain.