I got a bit adventurous with my flavours, this bread is pizza inspired, it’s bursting with basil, oregano, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, olives and vegan cheese!
This was my first time ever making a loaf of bread from scratch. I didn’t realise how time consuming it was! It’s so worth it though this bread easily competes with the luxurious bread you’d purchase in a bakery and it’s cheaper to make it yourself… BONUS! This loaf costs around £1.20 to make and it’s huge, I think we got about 14 generous slices out of it.
Makes 1 very large loaf
- 500 g Strong White Bread Flour (plus extra for dusting)
- 1/2 Tsp Dried Active Yeast
- 1 Tbsp Himalayan Pink Salt (or sea salt)
- 375ml Cold Water
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 30g Sun-dried Tomatoes
- 60g Vegan Cheese (grated)
- 15g Basil
- 15g Oregano
- 30g Olives
- 4 Garlic Cloves (roasted and chopped)
- In a large mixing bowl combine the flour and dried yeast (don’t dilute the yeast first, put in straight in!) Once combined add the salt and combine again.
- Pour in the water bit by bit constantly mixing until a sticky dough is formed (don’t be tempted to add more flour, sticky is what we want.)
- Pour the olive oil onto your work surface and scoop your dough onto it. From here we start the kneading process, you’ll want to knead your dough for a good 10-15 minutes. To knead the dough use one hand at the base of the dough to keep it in place and the other to stretch and fold the dough back on itself trapping air which is going to enable the yeast to rise our dough later on. Repeat these steps until a smooth round dough is formed.
- It is now time to prove our dough. It is important not to prove our dough in a warm environment, although this will speed up the rising process it will compromise the flavour. Place the dough back into the mixing bowl and cover with a tea towel and leave for at least an hour, I left mine for two, the longer you leave it the better the flavour. Ideally you’d leave it over night but I couldn’t wait!
- After our first proving time has elapsed dust your work surface with flour. Stretch the dough onto the floured surfaced and press firmly on the dough flattening it to remove some of the air.
- Here is where we will add our flavours. Add olives, herbs, roasted garlic, sundries tomatoes and half of the grated cheese and press the ingredients into the dough.
- It’s time to shape our dough, with the flat dough take one side and using your palms roll the dough (like a sausage roll) ensuring that the seam is facing down and is central. Round off the edges by tucking them underneath the loaf.
- Prove the shaped dough for another hour by placing it onto a lined making sheet and covering with a tea towel again. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200 degrees c.
- After this hour the dough should have increased in size again. Now we will create cuts on the surface of the loaf using a sharp serrated knife. Before making brush the loaf with more herbs and a little water. Finally dust with flour and sprinkle the remaining grated cheese over the top.
- The loaf is ready to bake, place into a preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes. If possible place a tray of water at the bottom of the oven to generate steam which will aid the cooking process.
- When golden and crisp to the touch remove from the oven and leave to cool before slicing.