Italian Bread

by Michelle on August 23, 2009

This week for the Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge we made Italian Bread. I like to serve breadsticks in place of crackers and since soup was on our menu that week I made breadsticks instead of loaves.

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Of course I have to change the recipe a bit and so I added 1 TBL slightly crushed whole fennel seeds and about 1/2 c. sesame seeds. I know it looks more interesting with the sesame seeds sprinkled on top of the breadsticks but I can not make the seeds stay put and believe me I’ve tried every which way, egg wash, olive oil and even tried embedding the seeds into the dough with my rolling pin. But still the seeds fall off and make a mess. So now I just add the seeds right to the flour and no more sesame seed showers!

And who knows you might even organize a quick game of chopsticks!

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Google Books has the entire book, “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread”, by Peter Reinhart, scanned and you can find the recipe on Page 172 by clicking here.

Below are a few of my fellow BBA’ers, please feel free to click on the links to see their interpretation of this recipe.

Emily of Flickr Photo Album.
Brandy of Flickr Photo Album.
Paul of Yumarama.


Gadgets that Work


Gadgets



One of my very favorite baking tools is my Flour Wand. I’ve had my Wand less then a year but it is one of my most used tools. The Flour Wand is very easy to use and securely holds the flour until you are ready to dust your pastry cloth.

To fill the wand just dip the Wand into your flour bin, press the handle together to open the coiled oblong spring and fill it with flour. And when you are ready to dust some flour, quickly flex and release the handles while waving the wand over your pastry cloth and the flour sprinkles out in an even dusting. I love my Flour Wand!

If you are wondering what the flowered cloth is that’s a vintage tablecloth and I use it as a pastry cloth. The tablecloth is a very heavy 100% cotton and gives me a larger work area when I am rolling out any kind of dough. I do wash them in cold water and hang to dry. You can pick up the small vintage tablecloths at flea markets or garage sales for $5-10.

All Rights Reserved 2008-9 © Big Black Dog

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Comments

  • Anonymous August 23, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Who knew? I’ve looked at those flour wands and though “just another gadget”. Apparently, I actually need one in my gadget repertoire! Thanks for posting!

    Lu

  • ~Jewel August 23, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    the bread sticks look amazing and i had never even heard of a flour wand. thanks for the education!

  • Kat August 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    I never heard of the flower wand, but it does look helpful.

  • Lori E August 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    Are you serious? A flour wand. How cool is this. Why don’t I have one. I have never even seen one before. I love gadgets. Of course if I actually baked once in a while I guess it would come in handy.

  • The Purple Foodie August 23, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    I love your flour want! Never seen it before. Really, really cool.

  • Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) August 24, 2009 at 2:12 am

    Hi Michelle,
    I’ve never seen a flour wand…but now I want one! Love your bread sticks…they look and sound yummy! :-)
    Susan

  • Cat August 24, 2009 at 3:13 am

    I wonder if the wand could also hold powder sugar if you need it for fondant, let’s say.

  • Michelle August 24, 2009 at 4:11 am

    catalinakolker, Yes the Flour Wand holds Powdered Sugar just fine. Although the powdered sugar does sprinkle a bit faster then I like. So I still use my fine sifter for powdered sugar.

  • Pam August 24, 2009 at 10:54 am

    I love breadsticks, and like you, I’ve never figured out how to keep the seeds on top. Incorporating them in the dough is a great idea!

  • Sandy August 24, 2009 at 10:54 am

    All that bread just looks tooo good. Bread is my weakness in life along with the butter of course. Thanks for visiting Copper~n~Things
    Sandy

  • Southern Fried Gal August 24, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    Yum! Love any kind of homemade bread and your breadsticks look amazing! I can just imagine the smell as they were baking. What a cool tool. Thanks for stopping over for a visit! Please stop by anytime!

  • oggi August 24, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    I’m planning to halve the recipe into one loaf and bread sticks. Mixing in the seeds is a great idea. Thanks.

    The bread sticks look very yummy.:)

  • Danielle August 24, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    I never new what a flour wand was! yeah! I learned something new today! Your bread sticks look great.

  • misterrios August 29, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    I have been coveting a flour wand ever since I heard of them. Of course, I am also a gadget freak.

    Your breadsticks are fantastic!

  • Pete Eatemall August 30, 2009 at 7:04 am

    Must make bread sticks soon!! I love the Italian Bread but I say that about every bread recipe so far!! Happy Baking! (I need to get a flour wand – 4sure!)

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