A warm sunny bread for the cold days , that is what this loaf is. The color of the loaf itself brings a smile to the face. This lovely pull apart loaf is meant for sharing, just get everyone around the table and dig in. Serve it with a bowl of soup , salad, some spicy curry or just by itself as a snack.
But right now with the mercury plummeting a hearty bowl of stew is what I will pair it with .To be fair I should be thankful, our winters are very mild. But living in southern California does spoil one a little bit. As soon as the temperatures go below 70°F, we don our sweaters and wrap a scarf lazily around the necks to boot. Now it is quite probable that we might still be wearing flip flops 😉 . You see we are scared that the warm clothes won’t see the light of day other wise.
Coming back to the bread – this bread was something I had been contemplating for some time. It reminds me of Methi Tepla , the delicious spicy flat bread from Gujarath and the Chinese Cong You Bing, the scallion flat bread. My son told me that it is the hungry caterpillar ! Now I did not quite see that.. It is pretty, it has sections and well I guess I can see a bit of caterpillar there.
Guess from this angle it does look like a caterpillar a bit .. Maybe if I had folded each sections it would have been more of a caterpillar. Well that is another project for another day.
Back to the bread – the wonderful golden yellow color comes from turmeric and it was a fun bake . the scallions add the bit of crunch and keep the bread very moist. I like to serve it with curries, instead of Naan. I have added a little cumin to give it a hint of smoky flavor, and it did go very well with the other flavors.
There isn’t any secret to making this. Once your bread dough has risen, punch down and roll out into a rectangle. Spread the herbed butter evenly on top. Slice, stack in the loaf pan and bake. Here it is in pictures 🙂 . You could roll it out much thinner and make more sections. But since my plan was to serve it with a Spicy Chicken Stew – I made these about 1/4 inch thick.
Don’t worry if the pieces do not stack tightly. As it rises the dough fills in the gaps creating interesting visual elements.
You could use a store bought bread dough for this recipe. The dough recipe here uses about 1/3 whole wheat flour and is very lean. The moisture from herbs and the butter between the slices acts almost like steam injection during baking and creates a lovely oven spring. The resulting loaf is soft and airy.
So here is the recipe …
If you are using a stand mixer
- Activate the yeast
- Mix all dry ingredients int eh stand mixer bowl. Attach the dough hook and mix for low for 15 seconds.
- Pour in the actvated yeast and the water. Mix on low speed for 1 to 2 minutes for the ingredients to be combined well.
- Turn off cover , the bowl and rest for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Mix in speed setting 2 (or medium or the manufacture’s recommendation for dough setting) for 4 to 5 minutes.
- Remove the dough on to a kneading surface. Knead a few times and form into a ball.
- Proceed as in the recipe.