As mentioned in Day 40 of The Challenge
This was an experiment. We have made the bloomer before, but as it requires you to roll out the dough into a rectangle the roll it up into a loaf, we decided to try it with nettle pesto spread on it. With black sesame seeds sprinkled on top it was a tasty snack but might need some tweaking. Certainly an idea to pursue though.
6 c flour
15 g cake of yeast
1 tsp sugar
1 1/5 -2 c lukewarm water
1/2 c pesto/nettle pesto
2 tsp salt water
2 tsp black sesame seeds
1) Dissolve yeast and sugar in the lukewarm water. Place flour in a bowl and make a well in it. Pour in the yeast and water mixture and gradually incorporate the flour into it.
2) Knead the dough for about 10 minutes to form a smooth elastic but heavy dough. Leave to rise covered with oiled cling film in a warm place for 4-5hours or until doubled in size.
3) Knock back and then knead for 5 minutes then leave to rise for 2 hours again, until doubled in size again.
4) Knead briefly, then roll out into a rectangular sheet about 1/2 cm thick. spread pesto on it up to 3 cm from the edge, then roll into a loaf. Preheat the oven to 230°C.
5) Leave to rise again for a half hour, and then seal the edges. Brush the top of the loaf with salt water and sprinkle the sesame seeds over the top. Cut slashes into the top of the loaf.
6) Bake the loaf on an oiled baking tray for 25 minutes then lower the temperature to 200°C and bake for a further 20 minutes.
This was tasty, and an interesting idea, but the nettle pesto had too strong a flavour for the bread. It was better once the bread had cooled and the pesto's flavour had mellowed. The bread itself is tasty, but the pesto spread idea needs tweaking. Maybe a regular basil pesto, or a red pesto?
PS: We used some of this loaf to make a savoury pesto bloomer French toast for dinner with kale and onion salad and some cheese and it worked surprisingly well. I do recommend trying this. This was the first time I've made a savoury French toast, but I will do so again! We had it with various condiments, both sweet and savoury, ranging from maple syrup and rhubarb jam to BBQ sauce and mustard, and they all worked delightfully well. If you try the bloomer, I do recommend trying out the French toast as well!