We're on a budget kick at my place: we've just bought our first home, and need to save more than we thought before settlement. This means that yesterday, when we had guests over, I couldn't just pop out to the shops and buy some snacks in preparation.
I made this delicious olive and herb bread with just what we had in the house. Yum. Even if you have to buy the ingredients, it'll be way cheaper than what a gourmet loaf will cost you at the bakery!
Preparation Time: 20 minutes, plus rising time
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Makes: a 675g loaf
Ingredients 1 thinly sliced onion (red or brown)
2 cloves of garlic
1 tbsp each of dried sage and rosemary, (2 tbsp of fresh is better if you have it)
400g of bread flour
3/4 tsp of salt
2 tbsp yeast
Approx 1 1/2 cups of warm water
Fry the sliced onion and crushed garlic cloves.
Add the yeast to 1 cup of warm water, and leave.
Mix together the flour, salt, herbs, sliced olives and onion mix.
Add the yeast in water, and mix.
Add more water, stirring, until you form a dough. If you add too much, add a little more flower to even it out. For me it's about half a cup, but it'll change depending on your flour type, and even the temperature of the day.
Once you have a dough, sprinkle some flour onto a flat surface, and place the dough onto it.
Knead for 10 minutes.
Rinse your mixing bowl, and return the dough to it, putting a piece of gladwrap, or a plastic bag over the top.
Leave in a warm place (during winter I put the whole bowl into a sink filled with warm water).
While waiting for the dough to double in size, preheat the oven to 220 degrees.
Once the dough has doubled in size, remove it from the mixing bowl and form it into a loaf shape.
Place onto a greased baking tray.
Cover again (oiling the gladwrap or bag helps it come off easily) and wait for the dough to double in size.
When it has risen for the second time make two slashes in the top of the loaf, and top with seeds or garnishes if you desire.
Bake for 40 minutes.
The bread is ready when you can knock othe bottom of the loaf and it sounds hollow inside.
The bread will last for a few days, but is magnificent eaten hot from the oven with butter or dips.