Say Cheese! … Goan Pao Bread goes Cheddar

039It’s good to be back where it all began, here at ‘The Cook, The Baker and The Clay Boy Maker’.

I’m the laid back sort. I think I’ve said it before. Frankly, I tend to say it every now and then just in case someone out there hasn’t heard it yet and mistakes me for one of those hyperactive, eager-beaver sorts. But then, it’s what I received as part of my heritage, being a good Goan that is (read: person from the beautiful, sunny, beach-kissed land of swaying palm trees known as Goa or “amche Goi” as we like to refer to the motherland, or simply, “our Goa”). The only difference between me and the local ‘poder’ (pronounced po-dere) or baker from Goa is that I would most definitely swap the ubiquitous bottle of fiery Feni that they swig down without batting an eye or twitching a muscle, for dainty sips of a good Merlot or Reisling.

But then, I did pick up a bottle of Feni the last time I visited Goa, only because the bottle was ceramic and had that lovely old-fashioned look to it, and because it would make a nice addition to the pots and bottles sitting in my little balcony garden, probably with a nice money plant growing out of it. The only problem is I haven’t got down to drinking the Feni yet. Perhaps I shouldn’t talk about drinking, given that it’s Lent and the very least I can do is not talk about alcohol even though I did have a glass of wine recently. But then so did my priest at mass.  

So back to the good old pao which we Goans so love and cannot do without, that Goan Christians in particular have come to be named after it. So we’re referred to as ‘Macs’ by all and sundry, which comes from the Konkani “maka pao di re” or “give me bread”.

Pao is nothing more that a pillowy soft and fluffy, pull apart bread. In the old days when I was very young and Goa was on the family annual holiday list., toddy (sap which is tapped from palm trees) was used to ferment the dough and give it that lovely aroma and flavour which is missing from the pao you get in the market today. I haven’t used it in my recipe either but I decided to elevate the humble pao in my own way and used a lavish sprinkling of Sharp Cheddar both in the dough and on top of the bread just before baking.

Flavour??? Yup!!! There was loads of it.

017So here’s the list of ingredients –

3 cups AP Flour (+ extra for dusting etc)

2 tsps active dry yeast

1/2 cup tepid water (+ extra if required to form a smooth and elastic dough)

1/2 cup milk

1tsp sugar

1 tsp salt

1/4 cup Evoo (+ extra to line your bowl etc)

1 cup grated sharp Cheddar (+ extra for grating on top after brushing the loaves with milk)

2 tbsps full cream milk for brushing the loaves

Make sure you prove the yeast for 10 mins in the water along with the teaspoon of sugar. Add the frothy yeast mix to the flour to which you’ve added in the salt. Add in the milk and knead the dough well for at least 12 – 15 minutes. Leave it to prove in a dry place for at least 2 hours. Once the dough has more than doubled in size, remove it from the bowl and knead it lightly. Roll it out and sprinkle on the grated cheese, bringing the dough over in the folding motion. Sprinkle over the balance cheese, ensuring that the dough has been evenly dotted with cheese throughout. Shape into even sized balls and either place on a prepared baking tray or in a baking dish. about an inch to an inch and a half apart. Cover and leave the loaves of pao to prove again for at;least another hour to an hour and a half.

Preheat your oven for at least 20 – 30 minutes at 220º C. Once the dough has doubled or trebled in size, brush the tops with milk and grate on some more cheese, as liberally or sparingly as you like. You could also do an egg-wash instead on the milk, but then the cheese gives the top of the pao such a lovely golden hue when baked, that the egg-wash seems quite unnecessary.

Bake the loaves for about 30 minutes… allow them to cool in the pan for a couple of minutes…

020021… before turning the loaves out onto a cooling rack for an additional 5 to 7 minutes…

024… and go pao crazy.

Cut into it and slather on some butter. Or just tear it apart and dunk glorious fragrant, warm chunks of luscious cheddar pao bread into your favourite gravy or curry. Believe me, it does go with everything.

037Enjoy!

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The Ultimate Brunch Bread

What do you call bread that’s packed with veggies, cheese and ham?

And no the answer I’m looking for isn’t… ‘A Sandwich’ 😉

It’s the ‘Ultimate Brunch Bread’

They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but unless I’m at a meditation centre on one of those silent meditation courses where you get breakfast at 6, lunch at 11am and lemon water at 5 in the evening, I’m not too much of a breakfast person. For me, that distinction goes to brunch especially on days when I’m at home and can pace my mornings out the way I’d like them to be. Breakfast is then just a mugful of coffee or perhaps two, and on occasion a fruit or some muesli with yoghurt. Just a little… But come 11am and I’m seriously hungry. It’s become such a pattern now that even when I do eat a proper breakfast, I start craving brunch at 11 and end up overeating.

So I’ve been dreaming up this loaf, bread rolls really, that would give me that feeling of a complete meal in a couple of bites. The Ultimate Brunch Bread which is what I decided to name it, with everything in it. What’s amazing about this bread is that it doesn’t just taste delicious, it’s such a feast for the eyes and the aroma is so intoxicating while it bakes and especially once it’s out of the oven, that you really don’t need an alarm clock or a gong to announce that it’s brunch time. With all those assorted vegetables, the Gouda and the smoked ham doing its thing, I was dancing around my kitchen in such glee you’d think I won the grand lottery. 

I went two ways with the ingredients, making two kinds of bread. A stuffed ‘Daisy Pull-apart Loaf‘ and ‘Mini Muffins Bread Rolls‘ with all those veggies and ham mixed in with the dough and baked in muffin trays.

Daisy Pull-apart Loaf

Mini Muffin Bread Rolls

It’s also a great way to get kids to eat their veggies. Do eliminate the lone chilli that I’ve used if you’re baking this for the kids, or simply remove the seeds and membranes so that the chilli loses its punch but retains all its flavour and goodness.

Here are the ingredients –

(This is for the dough)

3 cups A.P. flour

11gms fresh yeast

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

3/4 to a cup of warm water

1/3 cup grated Gouda

2 tablespoons dried parsley

1/4 cup EVOO (extra to oil bowl etc)

 (For the filling)

1/2 red onion (minced)

 10 curry leaves (chopped)

2 cloves garlic (minced)

1 green chilli (optional)

1/2 teaspoon salt

Large pinch of black pepper

1 tablespoon EVOO

1 cup carrots (blanched and diced)

3/4 cup corn niblets (canned)

1/2 cup red bell peppers (diced)

1/2 cup french beans (parboiled for 30 – 40 seconds and dice)

3/4 cup smoked ham (chopped – reserve the fat of the ham separately – you’ll need about 2 tablespoons)

(And finally the toppings)  –

I egg + 1 tablespoon milk for the eggwash

1 1/2 tablespoon poppy seeds (for the pull-apart loaf)

1 tablespoon each of white and black sesame seeds for the mini muffins

And now we come to the two-pronged method for two deliciously similar and yet different shapes of bread –

Prepare the dough the usual way, activating the yeast, then adding the flour and salt, before sprinkling over the dried parsley and the cheese and kneading it well. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and leave to prove for a minimum of 2 hours.

In the meantime prepare the filling, by melting the fat from the ham in a tablespoon of EVOO on medium heat till the fat rends and crisps up (but does not burn). Sauté the garlic, onions, chilli and curry leaves in the fat and EVOO, then add in the pepper and the salt and immediately add in the ham and the veggies, tossing them on high for 15 – 20 seconds. Keep the filling aside to cool (Do not cover the pan or the veggies will overcook and lose their crispness and colour).

Once the dough has risen, knock it back and give it a good, quick knead before dividing it into two halves. Prepare the loaf tin (I used a round sandwich tin) and the muffin tray.

For the mini muffin rolls –

Mix in about 1 1/4 cup of the filling to one half of the dough, adding it a little at a time until it’s evenly distributed throughout the dough.Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and shape them. Place them into the muffin trays, cover and leave the dough to prove.

For the Daisy pull-apart bread –

Meanwhile divide the other half of the dough into 9 equal portions. Roll them into spheres before flattening them out with your fingertips. You can use a rolling pin if you like. Fill each disc with about 1 heaped tablespoon of the filling and pinch the dough shut. Shape it and place it into the round loaf pan so that it looks like a daisy. Leave the dough to prove once the entire pan is filled.

Brush the tops with an egg-wash and sprinkle on any seeds of your choice. I used toasted poppy seeds for the daisy pull-apart bread and white and black sesame seeds for the mini muffins.

Bake the Daisy Pull-apart Bread for 35 minutes @ 210° C and the Mini Muffin Rolls @ 220° C for about 25 minutes.

The ‘Daisy pull-apart bread’ looked so pretty I almost didn’t want to take it apart, but then the aroma of the bread was so intoxicating I just had to try it out. And it was delicious. Just that perfect amount of bread to encase the colourful and tasty filling inside. It needs nothing more than your appetite.

I honestly thought the filling would be too much when I saw it in the pan, but in the end there was just a ½ cup left over.

As for the Mini Muffin Rolls, all you need is to slice them down the middle and slather on some butter.

I poured myself a mugful of coffee, sliced into one of those muffins while it was still warm, added a pat of butter, watched it melt into the bread… and took a bite.

Heavenly!

I think I should call them the Meal-in-a-bite Daisy and Mini Muffin Bread Rolls but it’s quite a mouthful, so I’ll stay with the Ultimate Brunch Bread and send it off to Susan at YeastSpotting.

I had the mini muffins with my coffee, and with some fried chicken at dinner. And I had some of the Pull apart stuffed bread at brunch this morning. And I’m Content 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Palm Sunday and a Red Chilli and Sweet Caramelised Onion Loaf

My dad’s sitting across from me as I type out this post, fashioning crosses out of the palms he collected at church yesterday. Palm Sunday signals the start of Holy Week and I try and make it to the services at the parish I grew up in. One of the most beautiful churches in the suburb of Bandra in Mumbai, St. Peter’s Church still conducts the best Holy Week services in this part of the city dotted with Catholic Churches in an otherwise predominantly Hindu country with a growing but relatively smaller Muslim population.

Bandra used to be a quaint little suburb when I was growing up, with tiny cottages and a few 3 storey buildings. Where weekends meant friends, games, parties and deserted streets. Where everyone knew everyone, at least on a head-nodding basis, and where it was safe to stay out late. But now the streets are lined with hawkers selling knock-offs of branded goods and imitation jewellery, and cheap Chinese imports, making an evening walk down the street impossible and a drive down to the seafront a nightmare. With the patronage of persons in high political office these hawkers have multiplied over the years and any attempt to relocate them to a designated hawking zone are met with threats. For most of the old timers with their children scattered around the globe this is a terrible situation, and it’s often easier for them to just turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to the goings-on.  They prefer to live in peace, or just live, even if it’s no longer that peaceful anymore.

So I’ve come to visit my parents. God and home were how we were raised. Morning prayers and night prayers and grace before and after meals and the rosary prayed together as a family during the months of May and October. And the Lenten Season with the Stations of the Cross leading up to Holy Week with its church services which culminated in Easter with all its glory.

I wanted to bake something for Mum and Dad since I’m visiting, and because breaking bread with the family is specially significant at this time of year, it was my first choice. My dad had just picked up a vibrant lot of red chillies from the market. Available only around this time, these chillies are plump and have a strange combination of sweet and hot spiciness trapped in every fibre. Not wanting to take a chance with the chillies since my mum cannot handle too much heat, I made sure I removed all the seeds and the membranes and sliced them thin, sprinkling over some granulated brown sugar and a good squeeze of lime and refrigerating the lot till it was time to use.

Here are the Ingredients –

2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour

11 – 12gms fresh yeast (I didn’t measure… just used the good ol’ eye measuring method)

2 teaspoons granulated brown sugar

1/3 cup sliced red chillies

1 large or 2 small onions

3 tablespoons EVOO

3/4 to a cup of warm water

After the chillies have been prepared and are chilling out in the fridge, chop/mince the onions and caramelise them with a tablespoon of olive oil and a heaped teaspoon of granulated brown sugar.

Once the onions have caramelised keep them aside to cool and activate the yeast. Add in the flour which has been mixed with a teaspoonful of salt and extra water as may be required, kneading lightly.

Sprinkle over the onions and the sliced chillies (do not add the water that has leached out of the chillies as it contains all the heat from the chillies) and knead well. Add extra water as required and a tablespoon or so of the oil.

Place the dough in a well oiled bowl and drizzle over a 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil. Leave the dough to prove for about 2 hours till it more than doubles in size.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, punch it back and knead for a couple of minutes before transferring the dough into a loaf pan for its 2nd prove (about 1 1/2 to 2 hours). I worked the loaf with my fingertips after transferring it into the pan to give it that uneven, bumpy, rustic, artisan bread look (which it is!)

Once the loaf has risen, score the loaf with a sharp knife and you can either use an eggwash or brush with olive oil (like I did) and sprinkle on a few poppy seeds.

My parents have a large gas oven so I baked the loaf for about 50 – 55 minutes at 210°C. But if you have an electric oven (like the one I usually use) 40 minutes at 200°C should be good.

The loaf developed a lovely crust with a nice bite to it and the inside remained soft, with the onions melting into the bread, leaving its heady sweetness in every mouthful.

Delicious even on its own, this loaf is best eaten warm with a liberal helping of butter.

Time for a trip to Yeastspotting I suppose.

Wishing you all a reflective and peace-filled Holy Week.

Supernaturally Sage, Roasted Garlic, Potato n Cheddar Kaiser Rolls

I’ve been watching reruns of Supernatural… and dreaming of ghouls and goblins and spirits… evil and good… and sage and garlic, and potato bread with cheddar.

I got that from my mum, my fondness for the macabre. She reared us on tales of witches and goblins, and scary sandmen, and old men with huge sacks who materialised out of thin air, only to snatch kids from their beds in the middle of the night. You’d think she half wanted to scare us to death with those stories. But we survived them and she, all three of us.

Not that we weren’t scared. I grew up terrified of the dark and made sure I tucked my sheets under me securely when I slept, just in case… but nothing supernaturally scary ever grabbed my feet or appeared in front of me as the Clock struck 12 or was it 3 am… the witching hour. But I wasn’t lucky enough to even catch a shadow of a glimpse of something remotely scary, or a glimpse of a shadow… If I did I would probably be six feet under.

I finally saw Psycho, when I was in my twenties. The original Anthony Perkins version, with my mum, who else, through the cracks in my fingers. And those were the non scary scenes. It took another 5 or was it 10 years for me to watch the entire film… on DVD. A camera may add 10 pounds, but a small screen works wonders with reducing fear. After all, you can perhaps count on sage and garlic to keep evil spirits at bay, but there are no protective herbs to ward off Mama Bates’ cross-dressing psychotic son.

By the way I love garlic… cooked of course, not raw. Roasted it’s even better, magically transforming its pungency into something sweet and a bit nutty. How lovely is that. And I love sage and have been dying to bake a sage and potato bread, but didn’t want to do any old potato bread. So I bunged in some mild yellow cheddar (a cupful), about 5 cloves of roasted and chopped garlic, with one rather large potato (parboiled till almost done and grated) and 1 1/2 tablespoons of chopped sage into a bowl and kept it aside while I went about activating the yeast and preparing the rest of the dough.. 1 cup of whole-wheat to 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour (+ extra for kneading/dusting as required). Add to that  2 teaspoons salt and 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, and you’ve got your dough on the go.

keeping evil kitchen spirits and sprites at bay

Drizzle some olive oil over the ball of dough and place it in a well oiled bowl. 

poof... or is it prove? 😉

 It took about 2 hours for the dough to almost treble. And once I saw it, I knew I had the makings of a delightful loaf in hand. The only question was… Did I want a loaf of bread or something different. So I tossed around a few ideas in my head before finally settling in to making Kaiser Rolls.

I punched back the dough, gave it a good knead and rolled it out into a log before cutting it into 14 pieces. Rolling each piece into a ball, then covering and letting them stand for 15 minutes before shaping the rolls.

And here comes the fun part.

Step 1… Flatten each ball of dough into a circle using the tips of your fingers

you can see all those specks of yumminess…

Step 2… Fold one end in

Step 3… Fold 2

Step 4… Now make the 3rd fold

Step 5… All folded in

Brush them with eggwash and sprinkle on some poppy seeds or black sesame seeds, like I did and leave them upside down for their final proving. An hour should be good.

I scattered some seeds on the parchment paper as well, so the rolls were well and truly embellished. Then upturned them for another 15 minutes before popping them into the oven. One lot on a parchment lined tray.

And another into a muffin tray…

Baking them in a preheated oven at 230 degrees C for 20 – 25 minutes.

Definitely worth a trip to YeastSpotting.

And here they are… my Sage, Roasted Garlic, Potato and Cheddar Kaiser Rolls.

Taking a bow...

Black Olive and Marjoram Semolina Bread

I must confess. I had never eaten semolina bread up until now, and didn’t know it was so hearty. Had just one buttered slice at brunch today, with my alfalfa omelet, and it was quite enough to take me through to dinner.

But it makes a darn tasty loaf and quite a good looking one too. The only problem was that I didn’t have any fine semolina flour. In fact, I’ve yet to see it in the supermarkets or at any of the stores here, though semolina itself in its more grainy form is used in many dishes, both sweet and savoury.

So I improvised, and ground 1 1/4 cups semolina in the food processor, to as fine a consistency as I could. Adding in the 12gms of fresh yeast I  had activated in about a 1/2 cup of warm water, along with another cup or so of the water, till the mixture resembled scrambled eggs. It’s important to allow the semolina-yeast mixture to sit for at least 15 – 20 minutes before adding the all purpose flour (2 cups), so that the semolina absorbs the water. Then add in the rest of the yeast mix, more warm water (if required) and a teaspoon of coarse salt, before folding in the chopped and pitted black olives (1/3rd cup), 4 – 5 tablespoons of fresh sweet marjoram and 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil… my little additions to the loaf.

All speckled with green and black

Given that I had never even tasted semolina bread before embarking on this venture, and to compound matters, had neither the bread flour nor the fine semolina flour suggested by most recipes, I decided to follow the three-prove method suggested by Macheesmo

3 hours for the first proving… After the dough has more than doubled, press it down or knock it back if you like… Go on! Get all that anger out! Bread making‘s a great anger management tool. All you therapists and psychologists out there take note. So yeah… knock it back, knead it lightly and return it to the re-oiled bowl for the second proving of 45 minutes to an hour.Once the dough has risen, press it down and roll it out with a light touch of the rolling pin, before folding the dough back in and shaping it into a loaf. You can also use a pat down motion with the palms of your hands, but the rolling pin is quite good.

The dough for this bread was really soft, so I sandwiched it between two towels while it sat its third prove (about 30 minutes or so, till it got nice and puffy). I’m glad I used the towels. I probably would have had Semolina Flat Bread if I hadn’t.

Finished by brushing the loaf with egg wash, sprinkling on some sesame seeds and slashing the top (diagonal cuts) with a very sharp knife, while the oven was preheating.

I removed the towel supports just before baking the loaf for 35 – 40 minutes at 190 degrees C… and this is it.

My Black Olive and Marjoram Semolina Bread… ready for that trip to YeastSpotting.

Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 20 minutes then transfer the loaf on to a wire rack to cool for at least 30 – 40 minutes before slicing into it.

Now slather on some butter and take a bite…

For my first attempt at Semolina Bread I was quite pleased, though I may tweak a few things here and there when I try another variation… starting with a finer grain semolina perhaps.

The bread is quite hearty, even on its own, so I haven’t been eating more than a slice at a time. The olives in the bread were quite lovely to bite into. But the marjoram is what made this loaf special for me… a delightful addition.

Quite similar to oregano, marjoram has such a distinct sweetness of its own, I’m thinking up a zillion ways in which to use it…

Perhaps in something sweet the next time.

Rosemary Parmesan Milk Bread

Weekend’s are baking bonanza time in my house… and I’ve got my fingers crossed over a raisin yeast water that I’m trying out… but that’s for another day and another loaf.

Speaking of loaves… I’ve been craving milk bread.

Milk Bread… mm-mm… the kind made with real milk and not milk powder. The sort I ate when I was young and when Bandra (in Mumbai) where I grew up, was dotted with numerous small bakeries. None of the fancy-schmancy patisserie or delicatessen sort of places which abound nowadays selling bread at crazy-assed prices. Just your regular old fashioned bakery, with big, hairy, sweaty, vest clad bakers who grunted out their greeting (who can blame the poor sod’s when they’re up all night) and handed you your warm, fresh loaf for a virtual pittance. I miss those days.

Now most of the milk bread recipes I came across were for sweet milk bread and I wasn’t in the mood for any of that. Plus I had a hunk of Parmesan that I wanted to see the end off. Which basically means that once its gone I have a legitimate excuse to rush to the fromagerie (oh who am I kidding! I mean the local deli which also stocks cheese) and pamper myself to a whole new selection of yumminess… ummmmmm.

So yeah, Parmesan it was and Rosemary, a 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon of the former and 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons of the latter… The +’s for sprinkling on top of the loaf before baking.

I used about 3 cups of all purpose flour, to 2 cups of warm low-fat milk and about 12gms of fresh yeast. Activating the yeast in the milk with a teaspoon of sugar. Adding it into the flour with 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil), mixing it in well, before sprinkling in the grated Parmesan and the Rosemary, and kneading it well. 

Prove the dough for 2 hours or till it more than doubles in size. Then knock it back and shape into a loaf.

Place into a prepared loaf-pan and allow to prove for another hour.

Brush the top of the loaf with an egg-wash… and score the top, before sprinkling on the extra cheese and rosemary. Bake the loaf in a 200 degrees C preheated oven for 35 minutes or till the top turns a nice golden brown and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped.

Cool the loaf and turn it out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Slice it up…. and Enjoy.

This loaf produced such a nice soft crumb and the flavour .was delicious, with the Parmesan and Rosemary coming through… but not too strong. A dish worthy of YeastSpotting.

I guess you don’t have to be a big, hairy, sweaty, vest clad baker to bake delicious milk bread… 😉

Honey Rye Bread with Mixed Seeds

Who doesn’t love a seed bread… with sunflower or pumpkin seeds, or even some sesame or flax seeds. And what better way to do them justice than to let them mix n mingle with each other in keeping with the season… letting them all come together in a delicious loaf using wholegrain rye flour and honey. I also love the flavour of aniseed, so I put in a spoonful… lightly toasting the mélange of seeds.

This bread is really versatile, with the rye flour and seeds, and the honey and brown sugar coming together to make this loaf truly delicious and nutritious.

Here are the ingredients –

1 cup wholegrain rye flour

2 ½ cups all purpose flour

3 teaspoons packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons fresh yeast

1 ½ cups warm water

¼ cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons honey (you can add an additional tablespoon or two if you like)

Assorted seed mix –

{2 tablespoons – assorted mix of sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds

2 tablespoons – flax seeds

1 tablespoon – aniseed}

So yeah as always when you’re making a yeast bread – activate the yeast with some sugar and warm water and allow to stand for 15 minutes. Adding in the oil and the honey and stir to blend.

Toast the mixed seeds in a pan for 4 – 5 minutes, tossing them constantly to ensure even toasting. Then remove the seeds from the pan and transfer to a kitchen towel to cool, and get back to the yeast mix. Adding in the all purpose and rye flour, and the salt, and mixing them, before adding in the cooled seed mix towards the end.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Then transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and leave to prove for 4 – 6 hours or till the dough has more than doubled in size.

Turn the dough, which should be fully aerated and light and puffy onto a lightly floured work surface…

Knead for 5 minutes, then cut the dough into 2 portions and shape into loaves or place into a cornmeal dusted bread-pan. Leave standing for an additional hour or two to prove again.

Take a sharp knife or a blade and score the top of the loaf down the middle and bake in a preheated oven at 200 degrees C for 25 – 30 minutes or till done. You can cover the top with a tented piece of aluminium foil halfway through the baking process to prevent the top from getting brown and crusty too soon. Brush the top of the loaf with olive oil and bake for an additional 5 minutes uncovered to allow the top of the loaf to brown and develop a nice crust.

I used half the dough to make the loaf and saved the other half to make some Figgy Rye Rolls – using a fig preserve I made… I just had to make something figgy for Christmas.

And as I said earlier this bread is so versatile you can eat it with a pat of butter, or with something sweet… some of that fig preserve perhaps.

Or even with something savoury… like these red wine braised chicken livers.

Either way… it’s a winner.