Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Olive oil bread by Bourke Street Bakery

We had a busy week because family from the Netherlands came for a visit. We had a great time sightseeing some of the beautiful places in the North of Thailand. We walked through  the jungle on nature trails, ate delicious Thai food and enjoyed our company! At the end when we came home we ate a lot of my home baked bread and they loved it. All the croissants are gone, the buns are gone and most of my experimental own designed sourdough bread is gone too. So when my sister and brother in law left for their trip back home to a freezing (minus 20!) Netherlands I needed to bake a lot of bread. Lucky me. 

I started with another recipe of Bourke Street BakeryI already tried their Carrot Cake; it’s delicious. You really should try it! I would love to have their book because it must be full of treats. 

I’ve baked bread with a lot of olive oil before, like Soft Semolina SourdoughThe Soft Semolina recipe requires more olive oil than this olive oil bread. Olive oil produces a soft crust and crumb. Normally we love to eat bread with a thick crusty and crunchy crust, but ones in a while we like this soft one too.

When I’m thinking of olive oil I think of that beautiful olive tree. I have a thing with trees, I love them. I would love to plant our garden full of big trees. It would be nice to have a variety of trees in our garden, but not all trees can grow here. For some it’s too hot. We have mango, lynches, banana (not a real tree), pomelo, avocado, trees with flowers and trees with medicinal purposes.
I’ve planted some seed of a pine tree from the Netherlands, and it’s growing. It’s over 2 centimeters already! 
We don’t have an olive tree yet, but I know it’s somewhere in Thailand. I think it would be nice to have a sapling in our garden too. And maybe a sequoia? 

There’s a list of oldest trees. The oldest clonal tree, Old Tjikko, is a Norway Spruce. Its roots are still alive after 9.550 year. The oldest single tree is Methuselah, a bristle-cone pine, lives in California. On this list there are pines, cypress, sequoia, redwood, juniper, larche, sugi and the sacred fig, also know as Bodhi Tree. A sapling from the historical Bodhi tree under which Buddha became enlightened is the oldest living human-planted tree in the world with a known planting date. It was planted in 288 BC.

Back to the olive oil bread. Before you can start with the dough, you need to make a pre-ferment the day before. You want to make a soft crumb and need to mix until you reach full dough consistency. You mix until the dough is smooth and silky.

This is what I used:
for the pre-ferment (180 gram)
100 gram All Purpose Flour
2,5 gram sea salt
3/4 teaspoon extra vierge olive oil (I used regular olive oil)
1/2 teaspoon milk
70 ml water
2 gram fresh yeast (I used 0.8 grams dry instant yeast)

For the dough:
600 gram All Purpose Flour
13 gram fresh yeast (I used 5.2 grams dry instant yeast)
400 ml water
20 ml extra vierge olive oil (I used regular olive oil)
20 ml milk
15 gram sea salt

This is what I did:
The day before baking day mix the ingredients for the pre-ferment in a supple dough. Transfer to a slightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic. Place in the refrigerator.

On baking day mix the flour, yeast and water. Stir with a spoon until all ingredients combine well. Leave the dough for 10 minutes to rest. Add oil, milk and salt and mix well.
Knead with your hands on the counter for about 10 minutes, add the pre-ferment and knead again for about 10 minutes.
Or with the mixing machine you add all ingredients, except the pre-ferment, in the bowl and mix 2 minutes on slow speed and 5 minutes on high (I did medium). Add pieces of pre-ferment and mix on slow for 1 minute and another 5 minutes on high (medium). The dough clears the sides of the mixing bowl and the dough is silky soft.

Transfer the dough to a slightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic and leave to ferment for about 1.5 hours. After 30 and 60 minutes you stretch and fold the dough*.

Pre heat the oven at the highest temperature and prepare for steam. Pre shape the dough and leave to rest for 15 minutes and shape the dough in a boulle. I placed the dough in a floured banneton and left to proof for about 40 minutes. Place on parchment paper on peel and score the loaf.

Bake the loaf for 20 minutes with steam, remove the steam pan and parchment paper. Baker for another 20 minutes without steam until the loaf has a nice brown color.

* This is the original recipe. My flour needed less water than I used. Even with extra stretches and folds it didn’t have the strength I wanted. To be sure I placed my ceramic pan in stead of the steam pan and baked the loaf in this ceramic pan. It looked good. Next time I’m more careful with the amount of water.

I found this at Yummy in my tummy 
I send this to Susan’s YeastSpotting and Heather of Bake Your Own Bread 


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Tanna, it taste good. Maybe next time I add some olives.

  2. Netherlands has also a lot of delicious breads. My girlfriend and I spent out Easter there. We ate breakfast together in bakeries, we've been through four bakeries if I'm not mistaken. I don't know if we were just fortunate but the taste of the recipes were splendid. Each and every bakery has its own masterpiece.

  3. Hi Dylan May, I think most of the Dutch bakeries have a large selection of delicious breads. I hope you enjoyed your stay and the flowers in the Netherlands.

  4. I tried adding some chocolate chips in the olive oil bread, and it tasted very good. My kids loved it.

    @Dylan: I must say, Dutch bakeries are splendid. There's a bakery museum in Medemblik. You should try it out with your girlfriend. It's one of the best pastry places in Netherlands.