New things aren’t always easy. For instance, this weekend I decided to improve my blog by buying a domain and switching everything over to a new template. Sounds simple, but in reality it was absolute hell for a person who has no idea what they are doing when it comes to computers. After spending two hours crying over losing all of my blog content from the past year, I took a deep breath, sat down in front of the computer and forced myself to resolve the issues that my ignorance had created. Thankfully I had Shiny Magic on my side. After purchasing and downloading my new template from Etsy, I quickly realized that spending the extra money to have someone else set up my blog would be much easier, cause less tears and frustration, and possibly give me a chance of having a blog that still in fact worked at the end of the whole process. I’m not sure if I would be able to post this recipe today if it wasn’t for all of the help I was given from Shiny Magic, I’d probably still be having a gigantic meltdown in front of the computer screen without the help that I received. I’m talking above and beyond help. Lynsey truly went the extra mile for me.
This bread pretty much mirrors the experience I had updating my blog. It seemed simple enough, but then I just bumbled it all up, and in the end it somehow resolved itself. My last bread experience went so well, that I think I became overconfident in my yeast-handling abilities. I stupidly decided to play around with the recipe, because that’s just what I do. Just a little note to everyone out there; follow the recipe when it comes to bread, at least until you know what the hell you are doing. This Italian bread round didn’t come out like I was expecting, it was a little dense, and it didn’t have anywhere near as much flavor as I was expecting, but in the end I realized that it was perfect for dipping and dunking. The crunchiness of the outside edges became amazing after being dipped into Sweet Tomato Soup and the flavor of the bread was enhanced after being dipped into flavored olive oil. Who doesn’t love a good piece of bread dipped in olive oil? Basically I took something that by itself was just meh, and paired it with something else that made it wowzers. It’s always great when you can save something, whether it is a loaf of bread or one year of your life that you have spent sharing with others.
- 1 Cup Warm Water
- 1 Tablespoon Granulated Sugar
- 2 Teaspoons Active Dry Yeast
- 1 1/2 Cups Whole Grain Oat Flour
- 1 Teaspoon Maldon Sea Salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 1/4 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/4 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
- 1/4 Teaspoon Dried Basil
- 1 Pinch Crushed Red Pepper
- 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Additional for Greasing Bowl and Hands)
- 1/2 Cup Plus 5 Tablespoons Bread Flour
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tablespoon Water
- Mix the warm water, sugar, and yeast together in a measuring cup; set aside for 10 minutes.
- Mix oat flour, salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, basil, and red pepper together in the bowl of a stand mixer on low speed for 1 minute.
- On low speed, add the water mixture and olive oil to the stand mixer; mix for 1 minute. Slowly add in the 1/2-cup of bread flour, and increase the speed to medium-low. Add in the remaining 5-tablespoons of bread flour, one at a time, and then mix for 5 minutes.
- Coat a medium glass bowl and your hands with olive oil, and then scrape the dough out of the bowl and form it into a ball. Place the dough in the greased glass bowl, cover it with saran wrap, and then allow it to rise in a warm area for 1 hour.
- Place a sheet of parchment paper on a large baking sheet, and then place a bit of cornmeal over the surface. Punch down the risen dough, form it into a ball, and then place it on top of the cornmeal covered parchment paper. Pat the dough down with the palm of your hand, cover with saran wrap, and allow to rise again for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix the egg and 1-tablespoon of water together, and brush it over the risen dough with a pastry brush. Bake the bread for 20 to 25 minutes.
- Serve this bread alongside your favorite soup, or with some flavored olive oil to dunk it in.
- This bread tastes best the day it is made, but is still great for sopping up yummy goodness for an additional few days. After that, try buttering the bread, cutting it into small chunks, and then sautéing it to make croutons.
- Add more flavor to the bread, whether in the form of salt, pepper, or additional herbs.
- Cheese is always the answer to any problem. Add freshly grated Parmesan to the dough, or even top thick slices of the baked bread with fresh mozzarella and broil until nice and bubbly.
RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: Rosemary Olive Oil Bread from A Hint of Honey
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