Olive & Sundried Tomato Breadsticks


IMG_0567This recipe makes a wet, sticky dough (80% hydration), but don’t be tempted to add more flour.  The great fruity tomato and olive flavours make these great as appetisers, accompaniments for soups and pasta dishes or just by themselves, with a glass of wine.  Perfect for christmas entertainment!

Makes about 12

Ingredients

Method

  • Place the olives, tomatoes, dried herbs, olive oil and 250ml boiling water into a pyrex jug and leave to soak for at least 30 minutes
  • In a large bowl, mix the flour and yeast before adding the salt.  Make a well in the centre and add the cold water and the contents of the jug (NB: these should be warm, but not hot)
  • Work the mixture into a sticky dough with a knife – it will start to look more like cake mixture that a bread dough.  Set aside for 15 minutes, covered with cling film
  • Tip the contents out onto a lightly oiled surface.  Using a dough scraper to help, stretch and fold the 4 sides of the dough back across itself, then return to the bowl and leave for another 15 minutes
  • Repeat the Stretch & fold another 3 times, after which the gluten will have developed and the dough doubled in size.  It will still be sticky though…
  • Tip the dough out onto a well floured surface.  Don’t knock back, but shape into a rough rectangle and cut into 12 even strips
  • Shape each strip, coating in flour and place onto a baking sheet.  Cover with cling film and leave to prove for about 1 hour.  NB: Twist or plait each stick for added effect
  • Bake in a preheated oven, 210oC for 15 minutes or until golden brown
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