Sourdough italian bread

Yield: 1 servings

Measure Ingredient
1¼ cup Starter
1 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Lukewarm water
1½ cup Flour
2 eaches Cakes or packages yeast
1⅓ cup Lukewarm water
½ cup Plus 1 tsp. grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon Black pepper (coarse)
4 eaches To 5 cups flour
1 teaspoon Sesame seed

Early in the morning combine the starter, 1 tsp. salt, 1 cup lukewarm water and 1-½ cups flour. Beat to blend thoroughly. Cover with a clean towel and set aside for approximately 5 hours. If the sponge has to set for a little longer or shorter period of time, it won't be hurt. When ready to finish the dough, stir the sponge down. Dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water and add to the sponge. Now stir in the next 4 ingredients in the order given, adding 4 cups flour first, and then using the other cup of flour if needed. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured breadboard and knead thoroughly, about 7 to 10 minutes. Then return the dough to a buttered bowl, cover with a clean towel, and set aside to rise until doubled, about 1 hour. When doubled, punch the dough down and set aside, covered, for another ½ hour. Now turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board again, and divide into 6 pieces of dough. Roll and stretch each piece of dough into a long rope. Braid 3 of the ropes together for each loaf. Tuck the ends under, and lift each braid into a buttered glass loaf pan.

Cover and set aside to rise until doubled again, about 1 hour. Brush loaves with melted butter and sprinkle each loaf with a mixture of 1 tsp. each sesame seed and grated Romano or Parmesan cheese. Bake loaves in 375 oven until browned and done, about 40 to 45 minutes.

From: A World of Breads Shared By: Pat Stockett Submitted By SHARON STEVENS On 10-21-94

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