The next recipe from The Art and Soul of Baking was the Rustic Olive and Thyme Loaf. This was perfect timing (or thyming ha ha) because I had some left over thyme in my refrigerator. I also had a jar of kalamata olives in my pantry.
The only thing I had to run out and buy was a banneton. A banneton is a special basket used to proof bread prior to baking. It gives rustic bread nice looking ridges. This recipe made enough for two loaves, but I only bought and used one banneton. At $$ a pop, I wasn’t going to buy two. Well, maybe I would have bought two but there was only one left at Sur la Table. :P Oh, no I wouldn’t have. I don’t need two. I really don’t.
As it turns out, the loaf I proofed in the banneton deflated when I dumped it out gently removed it. I’m going to have to work on that technique. Also, I should dried my olives a little more than the cursory pat with a paper towel. My loaves have a sickly shade of grey and loaves aren’t as crunchy as I imagined they would be. I think the dough was a little too wet with olive juices.
And although my bread looks like sickly E.T., it tastes delicious. That’s what counts, right?
If you haven’t already discovered the companion blog to The Art and Soul of Baking, I urge you to check it out here. This week Cindy Mushet, the book’s author, is discussing pumpkin pie.