Entering into the winter months, we often find ourselves with more indoor time on our hands, and if you’re like me, it’s just not the same as being able to enjoy the great outdoors — sure, there are those of us who love the cold weather, but I’m certainly not one of those people.
So, with all this extra indoor time on our hands, what better than to pick up baking and enjoy trying out new and delectable recipes (such as this bread recipe I’m going to share with you)!
There’s something about making homemade bread that fills the soul with a sense of joy. From the kneading process to the waiting, and finally, baking of the bread, the whole experience in my eyes is almost therapeutic. Plus, who doesn’t love fresh bread?! It smells divine, and when eaten warm with a generous pat of butter, it literally tastes like heaven.
With so many recipe options out there, it’s easy to incorporate pretty much anything you like, from olives to cheese, chocolate, dried fruits, or any number of herbs, the list goes on.
Personally, I love savory bread and enjoy incorporating herbs into my recipes — probably because I usually have such a variety at my fingertips in the form of a kitchen garden that I keep on my windowsill throughout the cold months (In the summer, I go all out, and plant quite a variety on my balcony).
— A side note on kitchen gardens: I highly recommend growing one. They’re incredibly simple, and you don’t need very much space at all — in fact, a few pots in a sunny windowsill usually does the trick and allows you to grow a bounty of herbs all year round (you could even have a try at growing a few veggies if you have the space). Plant a mix of common herbs such as rosemary, parsley, chives, and basil so that you can use them in an array of recipes at the pinch of a hat. Not only is it more cost-effective to grow your own herbs, but the flavor is so much better than the dried stuff.
Anyhow, enough about the benefits of kitchen gardens, let’s get back to discussing bread recipes — Specifically, Rosemary bread!
Garlic & Rosemary Bread Recipe
This beautiful, rustic recipe is a keeper and is the perfect activity for a lazy afternoon, or when the weather’s just not that great, and you’re looking for something to do.
And the key ingredient? Love. That’s right. The secret ingredient to good bread is to make it with love (cheesy, perhaps, but I swear by it).
So, without further ado, let’s get baking!
- 1 Tbsp dry active yeast
- 2 ½ Cups of unbleached bread flour
- 1 Cup of warm water
- 2 Tbsp white sugar
- 1 Tsp sea salt
- 3 Tbsp of fresh rosemary (or 1 ½ tbsp of dried)
- 4 Cloves of garlic
- 1 Tbsp of Olive oil (or melted butter)
- Preheat oven to 375°F
- Chop garlic, and roast for approximately 6-8 minutes and set aside.
- Chop Rosemary and set aside.
- Add yeast to a large bowl, and sprinkle sugar on top.
- Gently pour the warm water over the yeast and sugar and leave for ten minutes.
- During these ten minutes, the yeast should begin to bubble and foam*
- Add olive oil (or melted butter) and salt to the yeast mixture and stir.
- Add in garlic and rosemary and mix.
- Slowly incorporate the bread flour, and knead by hand for about 10 minutes until the gluten is released and the dough has good elasticity.
- Place dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover with a tea towel.
- Leave to double in size in a warm location for about an hour.
- Punch down the dough once more, and let rest for 20-30 minutes.
- Ensuring not to push all the air out, gently fold and shape dough into a rounded loaf.
- Place loaf on a baking tray (smooth side up).
- Lightly sprinkle with a pinch of rosemary and salt.
- Score bread with a sharp knife and let sit for 10 minutes longer.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown**
*This is important since if the yeast doesn’t do this, it might be dead. If this happens, you’ll need to buy new yeast, since dead yeast will not allow your bread to rise.
** You can tell your bread is baked if it sounds like a hollow drum when knocking on the bottom of it.
Even in the dead of winter, we can still take inspiration from our gardens and use it towards any number of delicious baked goods and other culinary concoctions, such as this Garlic Rosemary Bread recipe. After all, fresh bread makes even the dreariest of days seem not that bad. And, this particular bread happens to be a great way to put any fresh herbs to use that you may have on hand.
Give this comforting Rosemary infused bread a try — you’ll be sure to make it a go-to once you’ve tried it!