Monday, April 11

I = Italian Herb Bread

This bread originally came from the little recipe book included with one of the Oster bread machines. I didn't own it, but I loved the bread and many years after the bread machine got packed and moved away I went looking for, and found, this recipe.

I, of course had to modify it, since I was not making it in a bread maker. Knowing how long to let the bread rise and at what temperature to bake it came from the experience I gained from messing it up a few times and finally through baking classes.

This is another one of those things that we reheat in the toaster oven and spread with butter (and is surprisingly good with peanut butter). Definitely one of our favorites.

Italian Herb Bread

1 1/4 cups water
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups bread flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons dried onion flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons active dry yeast


Activate your yeast in 1/4cup of the water. To do this, add 1/4 cup of the water at about 100-105°F to the yeast and let it sit for about 5 minutes.
Add the flour and the rest of the ingredients to your mixer and knead with the dough hook for about 10 minutes.
Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl covered with a damp tea towel and place in an 80°F oven to rise for 1 hour.
"Punch down" dough (gently press using fist) and turn out onto lightly floured work space.
Roll the dough into a loaf or into small rolls if you wish.
Place dough in loaf pan, on baking sheet or in muffin tins. Score top of each with a sharp knife.
Bake at 400°F until golden and center is dry (about an hour).


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