Carbs have been given such a bad rep. I mean, I kinda feel pretty bad for them.
All this deep repugnance towards them whilst forgetting the beautiful role that they play.
Carbs are only a full on hero in bread, and to be honest, bread is the absolute bomb.
I would say ‘bread is the best thing since sliced bread’, but that doesn’t really make sense…
Anyway, being the huge bread fan I am, nothing gives me greater joy than working on a loaf over the course of a day.
It truly is a labour of love. You gotta be in it to win it.
In this case, to win it, it’s mostly a waiting game (yeast is a slow worker hey), but that never really bothers me when the fire is roaring and a book is calling ma name.
So really, it’s kinda a win win situation.
To be more specific, I don’t mind bread with a bit of a twist (heh heh see what I did there…)
Shaking it up but swirling through my favourite; garlic, herbs and of course, a whooooole lotta cheese.
What more could a gurl want?
I went head over heals for this version of the braided bread, I mean just check out all that room for bursts of herb and cheese!
Therefore, that bread to filling ratio?
And the smell?
^^ All you gotta do it walk through the front door to start salivating… then you run to the kitchen a pull apart the bread full of herby cheesy pockets
GARLIC & HERB SWIRLY BREAD
(recipe adapted from taste.com.au)
2 cups plain flour
3/4 cup warm water
1 teaspoon caster sugar
1 x 7g packet dry yeast
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup shredded tasty cheese
Garlic Herb Spread:
1 cup chives
1 cup basil
1 cup parsley
1/2 lemon worth of juice
1/2 cup grated parmesan
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
1. Place 1 cup of flour, warm water, sugar and yeast into a bowl. Stir with a wooden spoon until a thick batter forms. Cover with plastic wrap. Stand in a warm place for 30 minutes, or until frothy.
2. In the meantime make the Garlic Herb Spread by combining the herbs, lemon juice, parmesan and salt and pepper into a food processor and blend until well combined. Stream in the olive oil while blending and process until smooth. Place in a jar and set aside in the fridge until needed.
2. Back to the bread dough, add remaining 1 cup of flour, salt, 1 egg and oil to the yeast mixture. Stir until dough comes together. Turn onto floured surface. Knead for 10 minutes. Add flour throughout kneading until dough is no longer sticky.
3. Place dough into a lightly greased bowl. Cover with plastic and stand for 15 minutes, or until dough is well risen. Punch dough down with your fist. Knead for 2 minutes.
4. Roll dough out to be around 18×12 inches then spoon the garlic herb spread over top, spreading evenly with a spatula, then sprinkle over the cheese, leaving a clean 1/2-inch border around the edges.
5. Roll the long side of the dough into a semi-tight roll then cut the dough in half down the length of the dough roll and loosely pinch the ends together (the dough will fall open a bit because of the filling). Place the strands side-by-side, pinching the top ends together, quickly braid the two together, keeping the open ended parts on top. Pinch the ends together, shape into a wreath, securing both ends together.
(if the words don’t explain the braiding process well enough, Joy the Baker has a great video on how to do the braided loaf)
6. Transfer to a lined baking tray, loosely cover the top with plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes to rise a bit more.
7. Top with shredded parmesan cheese and bake for 25 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
8. Allow to cool slightly, then pull apart and enjoy!