Olive bread is a delicious no-knead bread made using whole wheat and all purpose flour. Olives are rolled in the dough during the folding process.
V also gave up and resorted to sarcasm to tell me how much he is missing home-made bread.
My cousin gifted me The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day last year in October.
V in his advancing years (he will kill me after reading this!) has grown very finicky about eating All Purpose Flour Bread. Whatever said & done, getting a very good, chewable, soft, less bitter Whole Wheat Bread is almost next to impossible. All experts say so. You add wheat germ, vital gluten, and what not.
To add to this, I do not have a processor of stand mixer and somehow kneading the dough perfectly is not my cup of tea. Aye, I accept. For me this book meant making bread without fretting about a stand mixer.
So when I got this book, my first attempt was to make the 100% Whole Wheat Bread. It came out good, well V loved it. But I found that the dough was not as wet as it is supposed to be. Jeff & Zoe have stressed on the dough being wet. But mine was not the first time, so I kept adding more water. Finally I did get the wet dough but may be the bread wasn’t as good as it should have been.
This kind of deterred me from baking another batch of whole wheat bread and V refused to eat APF bread.
Stalemate! Stuck! No Room for Negotiation!
After 10 months, one fine afternoon it suddenly struck me that all this while I have been trying the Multi Grain Flour & not really whole wheat. Since we eat multi-grain as a regular habit I never realized that Plain Whole wheat flour is a different entity. I know, I know, I berated myself quite a lot on my stupidity.
Finally I bought ‘whole wheat flour’ for the bread. To start with I made a compromise and tried the Light Wheat Bread dough recipe from the book, which is not 100% whole wheat but uses both whole wheat & APF proportionately.
With this dough I made Olive Bread. I must say this is one of the best bread I have ever made. And we love olives. I don’t need to say more.
Before moving to the recipe, a special mention to Jeff & Zoe for maintaining an absolute resource guide here. Apart from maintaining it they both personally reply to each & every query/ doubt/ question and I am sure repeating themselves very often.
I have seen only very few bloggers/ chefs really interacting so personally and well with their readers. Thank you Jeff & Zoe for being there when a bread baker needs you. :)
I highly recommend buying this book if you are a serious baker and can bake with APF. ;)
Over to the recipe.
- 1½ cup lukewarm water
- ½ tbsp instant yeast
- ½ tbsp salt
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- 2¾ cup all purpose flour
- ¼ cup olives pitted & halved
- ½ tsp cornflour
- ¼ cup water for cornstarch wash
- Pour water in a 3-quart bowl. Add salt & yeast. Mix using a wooden spoon.
- Mix in the remaining dry ingredients without kneading. Use a wooden spoon. You may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour.
- Cover (not airtight) and allow to rest at room temperature till the dough rises & flattens on top, roughly 2 hours. Refrigerate the dough without closing the container air-tight.
- On the baking day, dust the refrigerated dough with flour & cut a pound size piece. Using a rolling pin & your hands flatten the dough about 1/2 inch thick.
- Spread olives and roll up the dough to seal them inside.
- Again crimp the ends and tuck them inside to form an oval dough. Place the dough on a pizza peel or worktop liberally sprinkled with semolina. Cover with plastic wrap or overturned bowl and allow to rise for 90 minutes.
- Prepare the cornstarch wash by mixing 1 tsp of water with cornflour and then adding the remaining water. Boil or microwave the mixture till it becomes glassy.
- Preheat the oven to 230 C. Paint the loaf with prepared cornstarch wash. Slash in any pattern of your choice about 1/2 inch deep.
- Slide the dough onto the baking tray, quickly cover with another aluminium pan to facilitate steam generation. Bake for 25 minutes covered, remove the overturned pan & bake for another 15 minutes to brown well.