For Kwanzaa this year, I recommend baking my Sun-Dried Tomato Bread. This bread makes use of the dried tomatoes, bringing a burst of flavor to your celebration when winter has already arrived. The recipe makes two loaves, enough to share with your holiday guests.
Servings: 2 loaves
1/2 cup roughly chopped sun-dried tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1/4 cup kalamata olives, pitted and roughly chopped
2 oz fresh yeast
2 1/2 tsp salt
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 cups whole-wheat flour
2 marjoram sprigs, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Soak the sun-dried tomatoes in cold water for 10 minutes. Rinse and pat dry.
- Heat the olive oil in a small saute pan over low heat. Add the garlic cloves and cook until softened, shaking the pan occasionally, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly, then squeeze the pulp from the cloves into a bowl and mix with the olives and sun-dried tomatoes to form a paste.
- Combine the yeast, 2 teaspoons of the salt, and 2 cups lukewarm water in a mixing bowl. Stir to dissolve, then let sit in a warm place until the yeast begins to bubble, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Place the all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour in a large bowl and make a well in the center. Pour the yeast liquid into the well. Slowly combine the liquid with the flour. Using your hands, work the flour and liquid together to form a dough. On a lightly floured work surface, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato-olive mixture and knead until fully incorporated, about 5 minutes.
- Divide the dough in half and form into 2 loaves. Transfer to two greased 81/2 x 41/2-inch loaf pans. Cover and let rest in a warm spot until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
- Brush the tops of the loaves with olive oil and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and the marjoram. Place the loaf pans int he oven and bake for 30 minutes. cover the pans with aluminum foil and bake for another 30 minutes.
- Remove the loaves from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove the loaves from the pans and let cool completely on the racks.