Friday, October 22, 2010

Homemade bread is FABULOUS!!

I've been scared to make bread by myself, pretty much all my life..... until pastry school. Granted it wasn't my favorite part of the curriculum, but, I admit I learned to love it. This was my second favorite bread that we made at school.

Please welcome Sun-Dried Tomato Onion Bread .....enter applause here! ;o)

I thought instead of typing comments in between each pic, i'd try them on the actual pics.
Unfortunately, I didnt account for the size transfer and the font is itty-bitty. Guess i'm doing double work and typing the comments again! Live and learn, right? Right!

Mix the sun-dried tomatoes in the oil until it comes to a boil. Stir a few times.
The original recipe called for fresh compressed yeast but I did a little math ( oh no! not the M word?!?!?) and sub'd in dry yeast.
Once the tomatoes are cool, strain and reserve the oil.
BEFORE you add the yeast to the water ( whichever yeast you choose) make sure the water is between 105-115F or you will kill the yeast. Thats bad. Bad, bad, bad.
Once you have the correct temperature, dissolve the yeast in the water.
Add the onions ( i used fresh chopped, but you can use dried flakes or even powder), garlic ( i used chopped from a jar, but again, you can use powdered), reserved oil and salt to the yeast mixture.
Add all but a handful of the bread flour to the mixture.
Use the dough hook attachment and mix on low for about 1 minute. You may or may not use all the bread flour.
The dough should be soft but not stick to your fingers.
Lastly, add the sun-dried tomatoes. You can absolutely add them directly to the mixer. I prefer to add them by hand.
Gently form the dough in to a round ball on a lightly floured surface.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat completely. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume.
whoo-hoo! Look at that baby grow!
Thats quite a difference!
The next step is really personal preference. You can divide it equally, like I did. You can make 4 mini loaves, maybe little rolls, its really up to you.
Again, put them in a warm place to proof until just doubled in volume. ( yes, again)
This little bugger is called a Lam, it actually caused the most injuries in school. Not because people were careless, but because you dont initially know how to remove it from its sheath and when you do pull it out, your fingers are on either side- exactly where the blades are. Instant trip to the first aid kit as well as an instant dislike for the Lam.

Its actually just a curved razor with a handle. Any sharp knife will work just fine.
I went for the ever so popular "X" on the left and 3 lines on the right. Oh the creativity! LOL
You can check the bread for doneness 2 ways: The inner temperature must read at least 180F and when the bread is picked up, and you tap the bottom, it will sound hollow.
Kinda looks like a vegetarian turkey, eh?
A close up of the beautiful dough. Its just mouth-watering, isnt it?
All sliced and ready to be eaten and shared. Ready for the recipe? Lucky for you im in a sharing mood!

Sun-Dried Tomato and Onion Bread taken from The Professional Pastry Chef: Fundamentals

  • 4 oz sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 oz fresh yeast or 1 package dry active yeast
  • 1 & 1/4 cup water **must be between 105-115F**
  • 2 & 1/2 oz onion, chopped
  • 1/2 Tablespoon garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 1 & 1/2 lbs. bread flour
  1. cut the sun-dried tomatoes into 1/2 ich pieces. Combine with the olice oil in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, remove from the heat, and set aside. When cool, strain ans reserve the oil and tomatoes separately.
  2. Dissolve the yeast in warm water ( 105-115F) . Add the onion, garlic, salt, reserved oil from the tomatoes and all but a handful of the bread flour.
  3. When the flour has been incorporated, turn the mixer to medium speed and knead for about 6 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Adjust the consistency during the kneading process, if necessary, by adding additional flour, turning the mixer back to lowspeed before each addition. Incorporate the reserved tomatoes on low speed.
  4. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and turn to coat completely. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume.
  5. Without punching it down, turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 2 equal pieces.
  6. Shape the pieces into round loaves. Place on a sheet pan lined with baking paper.
  7. Let proof in a warm place until just doubled in volume. Use a lam, to cut decorative slashes on the top of the loaves.
  8. Bake at approx 375F until done. ( mine baked about 20 minutes)

Note: if you have sun-dried tomatoes already packed in oil, great! You can omit the first step.

I know bread can be a little scary, but give it a shot, I have a feeling you'll be pleasantly surprised!

If you have any questions, please dont hesitate to ask!!



1 comment:

Tina V. said...

Sun-Dried Tomato Onion Bread
Oh my God... Pure bliss!
I have to try this out! :)