There is nothing like eating fresh, crusty Italian bread with soups, stews or pasta dishes.
I made a beautiful Roasted Butternut Squash Ravioli tonight and wanted this fabulous crusty bread to accompany our meal.
We served with an olive oil, balsamic & Italian herb mixture to dip the warm bread into…It was delicious!
Type: Bread Recipe
Serve With: Softened Butter and Soup, Stew or Pasta
Prep Time: 3 hours
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 2 medium loafs
- 2 1/2 tsp dry active yeast – I prefer Fleischmann’s brand.
- 1 1/4 cups warm water – or tea
- 1 tsp sugar
- 3 cups flour + enough for dusting kneading surface – all-purpose or bread flour
- 2 tbsp flax seeds
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil + oil for bowl
- cornmeal – for dusting
- In a small bowl, combine water with yeast and sugar. Allow to bloom for 5 minutes.
- In a large mixing bowl, add (sift if desired) flour, flax seeds and salt. Add yeast mixture to large bowl and mix together until flour is completely incorporated. Add olive oil until incorporated.
- On a flat, lightly floured surface, knead dough for approximately 5-7 minutes or until it is silky smooth in texture.
- Oil a large bowl with olive oil, place rounded ball of dough into bowl and lightly coat with olive oil as well. Place plastic wrap directly on dough. Cover bowl with tea towel and leave in a warm place for about 2 hours to rise or until it has doubled in volume.
- Remove from bowl onto a flat, lightly floured surface and punch air out of it quickly.
- Cut dough in half and form each into small loaves. Slit directly down the middle lengthwise about 1/4″ into the dough with a very sharp knife.
- Place onto a cutting board or cookie sheet dusted with cornmeal to rise for an additional 40 minutes. Be sure to cover the loaves in plastic wrap again and a tea towel.
- Preheat oven & an upside down baking/cookie sheet on bottom rack to 425 degrees on the convection setting, if you have one on your oven.
- Gently slide loaves off of cutting board onto pre-heated cookie sheet in oven and bake for 10 minutes on 425 degrees.
- Turn oven down to 400 degrees for an additional 20 minutes or until golden brown. * Tip: In order to determine if the loaf is done, pick one up with an oven mitt or tea towel and thump the bottom. If it sounds hollow, it’s finished baking. * Tip: In order to get extra crusty bread, place a baking dish with water in it on bottom rack of oven, or on any rack if you’re using a convection setting.
- Serve with softened butter and a fabulous meal!
I hope you enjoyed this Italian Food Recipe on Cooking with Kimberly! Until next time…
Kimberly Edwards 🙂
P.S. Be sure to check out the Cooking with Kimberly Store!
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