Italian Spinach Bread
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Scant 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3/4 cup reserved spinach liquid
- 2 1/2 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast (not RapidRise)
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed dry, liquid reserved
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- Lightly sauté the garlic in oil, then let cool to room temperature.
- Warm 1/4 cup spinach for yeast to activate (105 to 115 degrees F).
- Stir yeast, sugar into warm spinach water in large mixing bowl; let stand till
foamy, about 10 minutes.
- Add remaining 1/2 cup room-temperature spinach liquid,
garlic with oil, the spinach and nutmeg and stir thoroughly.
- Mix the flour and salt into the spinach mixture.
- Knead on floured surface, sprinkling w/additional
flour to absorb moisture from the spinach, until dough is well marbled, soft and
velvety, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Place dough in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled,
about 1 1/2 hours.
- Shaping and second rise - Dough will be wetter after first rise. Put dough onto
a floured surface and flour the top of dough - don't punch down or knead. Shape
into round loaf and put on lightly oiled baking sheet (or parchment on the baking
- Cover with a towel and let rise for about 45 minutes.
- Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Slash a big V on top of loaf with sharp knife.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Reduce heat to 400 degrees F and bake an additional 30-35 minutes.
Makes 1 round loaf