If it weren't right there in my blog title, I might feel like I had to tell you once in a while that I am rather excited to get a good deal. Well, I got a gift certificate to Ross for Christmas. It's one of my favorite places to shop. So, there I was, pushing my cart through the store, looking for deals I couldn't pass by. I always head for the cookbook section. I found a copy of Martha Day's Baking for $7.99. I fell in love with the photos. (Photos are what I consider my biggest blog problem). I put the book in my basket and continued on. Then, I found in the clearance section a copy of Martha Day's Complete Baking for $3.49. When I flipped through the pages, I discovered that they were, in fact, the same book under a different name. Guess which one I bought.
Anyway, after digging out my kitchen scale and looking all over the internet to decipher British ingredient lingo, I have decided to bake my way through the luscious bread section of the book. 140 pages of breads. I am so excited. Granted, some of the breads are pretty similar after a while, there are enough to keep me busy.
This week's bread comes from Italy. It uses olive oil inside and out. What attracted me most, however, was the technique of snipping the rolls right before baking to make a rosette. Regardless of whether or not you make these rolls, you have to admit, they are pretty.
Italian Panini all'Olio (from Complete Baking)
1 pound bread flour
2 tsp salt
1/2 ounce yeast
8 ounces lukewarm water
4 Tbsp olive oil (plus more for brushing)
Sift the flour and salt together. In a small bowl, combine the yeast and water and let the yeast work. When it's bubbly add it to the flour along with the olive oil. Using a mixer, mix the ingredients to a dough. Knead for 8-10 minutes (by hand or 4-5 minutes by mixer). Cover and let rise for 1 hour. Punch down and divide into 12 rolls. Brush each one with olive oil and let them rise, covered another 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and snip the tops of the rolls with scissors, forming pentagons in the center and a bigger flower around the edges. Bake 20-30 minutes.
The rolls were pretty dense. The flavor was good and they would be great served with soup.