Rosemary Peasant Bread Has Crust of Pure SunshinePosted: October 21, 2008
Actually, it’s more like a crust of golden deliciousness. This bread is soft, chewy and full of rosemary goodness AND it’s 100% whole wheat. I used my “No Brainer Bread” recipe and then took some advice from Joy of Cooking and Bittman and crossed my fingers. I am a very lucky girl.
Rosemary Whole Wheat Peasant Bread
23-25 oz whole wheat bread flour
2 cups warm water
1 packet instant dry yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tsps. salt
3 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary
Preheat oven to 200F. Proof the yeast by pouring the warm (110-115F) water over it and the sugar. Let it sit until bubbly, about 5-10 minutes (if using stand mixer, use your stand mixer bowl for this). Turn off oven. Combine flour, 2 tablespoons rosemary and salt. Add flour to the yeast mixture and knead with dough hook (or knead with your hands). If the dough is too wet, add more flour. It should become elastic and smooth and shouldn’t stick to your hands too much.
Put a bit of olive oil in a bowl and plop your dough into the bowl. Cover with a towel and let rise in the warm oven for at least an hour or until the dough doubles in size.
Punch dough down and separate into two equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm and non-drafty place (my clothes closet) for about an hour or until doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 425F. Brush the tops of the bread with olive oil and sprinkle the remaining rosemary on each loaf. Place loaves directly on a baking stone if you have one (it should be in the oven while its preheating) or just slide the baking sheet in the oven. Use a spray bottle to spray water on the walls of the oven or throw a couple of icecubes in your oven and shut the oven door quickly – be careful of the steam! This will make your crust special. Bake at 435F for 10 minutes and then lower the heat to 350F and bake for another 15 or so; the tops of the loaves should look very tan and golden brown. Remove, cool, slice and eat!