Rosemary is on of those herbs that I have grown to like much more as I have gotten older. That said, a careful hand is needed, the right amount brings amount a lovely fragrance and taste, too much and the whole meal is left tasting of perfume and soap!
I recall one such instance in which the university cooked carrots in what appeared to be a whole rosemary bush, I honestly did not go near rosemary for over a year.
Thankfully I am over it or this bread would never have been born.
This loaf goes fantastically well with lamb. I had it alongside a lamb salad and also for a sandwich with lamb and pesto, both were equally delicious.
Rosemary, honey and poppy seed bread
makes 1 small loaf
125g white bread flour
125g wholemeal bread flour
1 sachet yeast
15g poppy seeds
1/2 tsp salt
Sprig of rosemary, finally chopped
175ml warm water
1 tbsp honey
Mix the flours, yeast, poppy seeds, salt and rosemary together in a large bowl. Stir the honey into the warm water to dissolve it.
Slowly add the water mix to the dry ingredients and combine to form a soft dough, The dough wants to be soft but not overly sticky, you may not need all the water, I had about a tablespoon leftover.
Lightly coat a worktop with olive oil and knead the bread for 5-10 minutes until smooth and springy. Place the kneaded dough into an oiled bowl, cover with film and allow to rise for 1-2 hours.
Knock back the dough and then shape it into a small loaf, any shape you like. I had a moment of creativiy so mine ended up braided!
Place onto a baking tray and allow to rise again for ~30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 220C/200C FAN.
After the dough has risen for a second time place it in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until deep golden and the base sounds hollow when tapped.
Allow to cool on a wire rack and then enjoy!
This bread reminded me just how much I enjoy making and eating my own bread, the flavour is unlike that of the supermarket and the combinations are endless.
p.s. sorry for the alarming photos, I had to take them with my phone but the camera will be back soon!