Monday, March 14, 2011

Homemade Kalamata Olive and Herb Bread

Nadine and I often buy fancy bread from the European bakery that's conviniently open across the road for weekend breakfasts, and our favourite is the kalamata olive loaf.

However, it costs $6, it's made from white flour and also has a million unescessary other ingredients in it's long (vegan, I checked, the poor guy at the counter was very flustered haha) list. Sugar, preservative numbers, this, that, the other. But damn it is a tasty bread.

But since I can't afford that sort of money for bread anymore (or their delicious traditional German pretzels homg) or ever really could, I decided one weekend to just make some.

It turned out pretty awesome.

Kalamata Olive and Herb Bread
Makes 1 loaf


450g wholemeal flour
1 sachet of instant dried yeast (this is about 2.5 tsp)
1/2 tsp salt
50g gluten flour (vital wheat gluten)
2 tbsp (or more!) or mixed dried herbs or your favourite
100g chopped or sliced kalamata olives (make sure there are NO pits! it's not worth losing a tooth over)
Enough warm water to make a firm moist dough

Mix together flour, gluten flour, salt, olives, herbs, and yeast. Make a well in the center and pour in the warm water (start with one cup).

Mix the dough, adding more water until a firm elastic dough is achieved.

Turn onto a floured bench. Knead for 5 minutes or until smooth. Place in an oiled bowl and let rise* for about 1/2 an hour or until double in size.

Knead again lightly. Press out dough gently to about the length of your loaf tin and roll it up. Place the rolled up dough in the tin with the 'seam' side down. Let rise again until doubled.

Bake at 200 degrees C for 30-40 minutes or until brown and sounds hollow when tapped.

Try to let it cool down before you slice it or eat it!

*I have a gas oven at home so I light it for a few seconds then turn it off and leave the dough to rise inside. It works perfectly.
In this particular loaf I made I put in too much water, and it didn't rise as much as my regular whole grain bread. But next time I'll remember about the water! I also didn't bake it long enough, it was a little doughy in the middle. And I sliced it while hot. I got impatient. Don't get impatient, it's better when cooled down!!

But the overall result was awesome, and next time we want a fancy bread for breakfast I'll make it again!

The possibilities are endless. Maybe I'll add chilli, or caramelised onion next time.


Theresa said...

Ooh, I love olives, and it is rainy here so perfect bread making weather. I think sundried tomatoes inside, too!

Emma said...

@ Theresa: That's a great idea!