Sunday, January 1, 2012

Recipe #4 - Warm Rustic Cherry Bread and goat cheese sandwich - Omg!

Happy New Year everyone!

For Bakeology 101, 2012 promises to be a good year. I'm still going strong on my Baking challenge of finishing the 1000-page Culinary Institute of America book. There are so many recipes left and I'm excited to do every single one of them.

The last few weeks have been all about breads and rolls and I loved making these so much that I decided to continue working on that section of the book for the next few months.

Yesterday, I was lazy. Really, really lazy. You know, when you wear your bunny slippers (I need to get me a pair of these), scented candles, and watching episodes of Glee? Well, I wanted to be a little productive and baking defines productivity (in terms of eating).

So I cracked open the 1000 page book to stumble upon a relatively simple Rustic Raisin Bread. No, I did not just type the title incorrectly - although I have done that on occasion. That's what it says in the book. But, I didn't have any raisins and so I just substituted dried cherries in it's place.

The bread was quite simple to make and all it required was almost three hours of rising (one hour initial rise and another two hours of proofing). The perfect downtime for watching a movie and a few more episodes of Glee.

The batter was definitely on the more wet side but still elastic. I think I should have added a little more flour, because the bread was a little on the dense side (still delicious though!). When it came out of the oven, it looked beautiful and amazing. I should have used more cherries in the batter.

Do NOT put dried cherries on top as a garnish before the baking, because they will just burn (like mine did). I just got rid of those top cherries and the bread still was absolutely great.

Now, you can eat the bread all by itself and I ate a few slices. But, then I got an idea from the goat cheese logs they sell at TJs. You know the one that has either blueberries, cranberries, or cherries inside them? Well, taking a page out of that book, I slathered a little bit of goat cheese between two slices and it was amazing!!

AMAZING!! It was so good that I made the word bold.

Definitely try this recipe out. It makes a great sandwich for lunches, brunches, or just for munches.

Warm Rustic Cherry Bread
Adapted from the Culinary Institute of America
Yield: 1 loaf
283 gm of Bread flour
4.3 g (or about 1/2 tablespoon) of instant dry yeast
240 mL (a cup) of whole milk
8.5 g of honey (about a tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon of salt (cut way back from the original recipe)
1 cup of dried cherries (chopped)

1. Combine flour, yeast, milk, honey, and salt.
2. Mix with a paddle attachment for 4 minutes and then switch to a dough hook for 4 minutes. The batter will be moist and sticky. Add flour as necessary to keep it only slightly moist (I made that mistake of not putting enough)

3. Ferment for an hour near a warm place till the batter doubles.
4. Transfer the batter to a greased loaf pan 9 by 5 by 2 inches.
5. Ferment in a warm place for another hour and a half or two hours.
6. Preheat the oven at 400F - 30 minutes before baking the bread and put a sheet pan on the bottom.
7. Throw an ice cube on the sheet pan and immediately put the bread on the top rack of the oven and close the door.

8. Bake for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature is about 210 F.  Vent the oven for 10 minutes
9. Put the bread on a cooling rack and let it cool completely

To make the sandwich:
Slather two slices of the rustic cherry bread with a heaping amount of goat cheese or any other cheese you like.

Microwave for 30 seconds or toast it in 350F oven (covered in aluminum foil for 10 minutes). Either way it's amazing.

Eat an apple too - it's good for you.

I give this bread two thumbs up.