This is my second time attempting to make this, and honestly, with a bit of experience under my belt, I don’t feel like I fucked it up! The outside is definitely a darker brown than in the pictures, for sure, but the bread inside appears to be perfectly done. Pairing this with sardines in pepper olive oil (as none of the stores I went to had sardines fresh or large enough to be done up for a proper Braavos Breakfast) probably later in the week, and if the sardines make it to the weekend, probably with some wine. 😉
Umma’s Olive Bread
Makes 3 large loaves
- 6.5 c flour
- 1.5 T active dry yeast (aka a package and a half)
- 2.75 c lukewarm water
- .25 c olive oil
- 1.5 T salt
- 1 T honey
- 1 c pitted kalamata olives
- 1 sprig rosemary, chopped
Take 1 c of water, .5 c of flour, and your yeast, and mix it together in a large bowl (trust me, you’re gonna need it). Let sit ten minutes, until it gets frothy, like in picture 1. Then, mix in your olive oil, honey, salt, the rest of your water, followed by your flour, a cup or two at a time. This will look like picture 2 as you do so. Mix with a wooden/plastic spoon, and if necessary, your hands, until you have a large, cohesive ball of dough. Then, add your Kalamata olives and rosemary, and work into the dough with your hands, until you have a coherent ball of dough similar to picture 3. Cover with a towel and let sit for an hour and a half. The difference between pic 3 and pic 4 is what your dough ball should look like after that time; you are going to have a very large ball of dough.
Once you have that dough ball, divide it into three equal pieces, and pull the edges of the piece under until you have a ball. Take your three balls, put them on a large baking tray, and then cover again and let rise another half hour. Pic 5 is what the balls should look like at the beginning of that half hour, and pic 6 is what they should look like at the end of it.
Once you have your risen dough balls, preheat your oven to 450 (mine was at 425) and score your bread with a serrated knife, in whatever patterns you choose. I chose a seven pointed star to keep with the Game of Thrones theme, and then two other pretty looking patterns I found doing a quick Google. Place your bread in the oven, on two separate baking sheets if you need to, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the crust is a nice brown and firm to the touch.
And then, if you have them on you, enjoy with a cup of wine and sardines in pepper oil for a Braavos breakfast. I also have some olive oil left over from marinated feta that I’ll likely be using for a dipping sauce.