I love baking breads and love it especially when I have to make it savoury.All the savoury ingredients kneaded into the dough or topped onto it makes it heavenly. Its ok when you roll it out fill it and bake it as a normal rectangle or round loaf / buns. I have tried crescent rolls as well.Thats the max I could go I used to think. Shaping a filled bread always gave me goosebumps.
But when this month Aparna gave us a theme - savoury filled and differently shaped bread - instead of a recipe I decided to conquer this fear and tried out a bookmarked bread which I used to sigh at. In the end the bread turns out nice and a perfect snack and my confidence several notches up.
I had sourced the recipe for Pane Bianco from the usual source King Arthur Flour. This is an Italian bread where Pane means bread and Bianco stands for white. Apart from this I could not source out more details about this. And as usual I halved the recipe and tried it out. Also I went for roasted tomatoes and Italian seasoning instead of the sundried ones and granulated garlic used in the recipe. You can ofcourse follow the exact recipe.
All Purpose Flour: 3 cups
Instant Yeast: 2 tsp
Sugar: 2 tbsp
Salt: 1 tsp
Warm Water: 4 tbsp
Warm Milk: 1/2 cup + optional 1-2 tsp
Extra Virgin Olive Oil : 8 tsp
Egg: 1 or EnerG Egg: 1.5 pkd tsp + 3 tbsp water
Roasted Tomatoes: 2 -3 medium ones.
Italian Mixed cheeses: few tbsp -1/2 cup. I used a mix of mozzarella &parmesan
Fresh Basil: roughly 4 tbsp chiffonaded or torn
Italian seasoning: as per taste
Combine all ingredients - dry ones first and then add the wet ones. Mix and knead to form a smooth soft dough.
Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat and let it rise until doubled covered with a plastic wrap.
Meanwhile line the baking sheet with parchment/foil and optionally grease it.Keep the filling ready in separate bowls.
Finely chop the tomatoes and keep aside. The recipe went for sundried tomatoes. I went for quick roasted tomatoes. I simply roasted quartered and deseeded tomatoes at 220C after sprikling them with salt, pepper and little sugar and a drizzle of olive oil. This took around 20 minutes where they caramelized and the juices concetrated.
Gently deflate the dough and divide into half. Roll one piece into rectangle.I went for a thin rectangle so that there could be many layers. Spread the cheese onto the rectangle followed by seasoning, tomatoes and finally basil.
Starting with the longer side, roll the dough into a long log, pinch edges to seal.Place the log seam side down onto the lined sheet. Using shears, start 1/2" from one end and cut lengthwise down to the center about 1" deep to within 1/2" of the other end.Make sure you don't cut the bread fully.
Shape the log into an 's' shape or tuck in both the ends under/ at the sides of the centre to form an '8'. Pinch the ends together to seal. Cover and let it rise until doubled for another 1 hour. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350F/ 175C for about 35-40 minutes , covering the bread with foil -else the filling will burn- after 10-15 minutes.
Take out let it cool and serve sliced as a snack. You can go for mini sized versions for individual servings.
It looks good when you bake a bread shaped with you initials , doesn't it? Enjoy the bread. Its quick and easy to make and texture similar to the loaf bread that we get her. You can play around with the flours if too much experimental and obviously the filling which you can make savoury or sweet.