Thursday, 23 July 2009

Tomato and basil bread

For me fresh bread still warm from the oven slathered with melting butter is one of the greatest culinary joys there is, it's just one of the reasons why I've almost entirely stopped buying bread from the supermarket. Not only does fresh homemade bread taste amazing but it's also cheaper to make and much better for you than most supermarket breads.

Normally I just make plain white or wholemeal loaves, all purpose bread that's as good with Nutella as it is with a big wedge of cheddar. Every now and then though I like to be a bit more creative by adding different flavours to my bread or making it using new methods and techniques to make it. A few weeks ago I came up with an idea for making tomato bread, instead of adding water to the flour to make a dough I used a tin of chopped Italian tomatoes.The result is this beautiful loaf of bread not only did it taste amazing and have a fantastic soft texture but it also had a brilliant reddish colour, I only used white flour so all the colour you can see is purely from the tomatoes. I added some basil simply because it works really well and is one of my favourite combinations.This would make the perfect accompaniment to soup, especially something Italian such as minestrone, it also works really well with cheese, ham and obviously tomatoes!

Tomato bread recipe

Ingredients:
  • 500g Strong white bread flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • A 7g Sachet of dried instant yeast
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of oil
  • A 390g Tin of chopped tomatoes
Method:
  • In a large bowl combine the flour, salt, sugar and yeast. Mix well.
  • Make a well in the flour mixture and add the tomatoes and oil, bring everything together to form a dough using either you hands or a wooden spoon. Alternatively use a stand mixer with a dough hook attached. You may need to add a little more flour if your dough is too wet, it should be slightly sticky but not cling to your hands.
  • Knead the dough (by hand or in the mixer) for around 10 minutes then cover with a piece of clingfilm which has been smeared with oil (this stops the dough from sticking to the clingfilm) and leave to rise for around half an hour or until doubled in size.
  • Once the dough has doubled in size knock it back and knead for a few minutes more then, either shape the dough however you want it and place it on a baking tray or place it in a loaf tin.
  • Cover again and leave until it has doubled once more then bake in an oven preheated to gas 6/200c/400f for about half an hour until the top is golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

15 comments:

Karen said...

What a beautiful bread... love the color and I bet it is just wonderful!

James said...

No water just tomatoes - that's a great idea!

Would make a good pizza base too. I want to try cooking the pizza base on the grill pan. I was thinking of nettle pizza tonight as I was frying nettles. It's just time though......

♥peachkins♥ said...

I love the flavor combination of basil and tomato.I would love a piece of that bread!

Beth said...

Looks delicious Sam. Will have to give it a go once my kitchen is back in working order

Hopie said...

Why is it you always have me wanting to make bread, Sam? What a brilliant idea. Looks like it has a nice texture and sounds yummy!

Amanda @ Mrs.W's Kitchen said...

Now that's a colorful loaf of bread! I love it--how about some chopped pepperoni, too, for a full italian loaf--or using the dough for pizza or to roll up cooked italian sausage and mozzarella jelly-roll style... yum, yum!

Brilliant, again, Sam. I've come to expect nothing less!

Katie said...

What a great idea for getting lots of tomato flavour. Love the colour, bet it tastes fab

pigpigscorner said...

Great idea using tomatoes! I've been making a lot of bread these days too. Home-made is always the best.

The Caked Crusader said...

oh yum - I love any bread with tomato in and this looks particularly gorgeous! What a colour!

onlinepastrychef said...

Nice--I can see using flavored tomatoes, too. In the US, we have Ro-Tel, which is tomatoes and green chilis. That would make a killer southwestern style tomato bread!

Love the color, I can imagine biting into a big old grilled cheese sandwich made on this bread. Mmmmm. :)

croquecamille said...

Grilled cheese is an excellent idea! As is using tomatoes in place of water for your bread. Tomato and basil is one of my favorite combinations, too!

Ben said...

Great idea! And your loaf turned so beautiful. Making bread at home is so simple (after many tries) that I don't buy it at the store anymore. This recipe is going into my favorites right now :D

Pam said...

I love anything with tomato and basil - bread is a great idea. Looks delicious.

Anne said...

I love the colour of this bread, never thought about adding tomatoes to bread, bet its very tasty!

bensamdan said...

I had a head on for baking bread yesterday and found this recipe...its turned out delicious! Had some this morning with a treat of smoked salmon.....yum. Thanks for the idea.