Flavors of Italy Braided Italian Bread


Yield: 1 loaf


1 (1/4-ounce) envelope active dry yeast

1 tsp sugar

1 cup warm water (100° to 110°)

2 to 3 cups bread flour

2-3 Tbsp Flying Olive Garlic Extra Virgin Olive Oil or mild-medium Flying Olive Single Varietal of Choice, divided

1 teaspoon salt

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced

1 Tbsp garlic, minced

1 Tbsp sundried tomatoes, drained and chopped fine


Combine the yeast, sugar, and 1 of cup warm water in the bowl of a heavy-duty electric standing mixer.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Using dough hook attachment, slowly add 2 cups of flour, 2 Tbsp Flying Olive Garlic EVOO, and salt to the mixing bowl.  Beat at low speed, for 1 minute.

Gradually add additional flour until the dough begins to leave the sides of the bowl and pull together. (Note: The dough will take on a "shaggy" appearance as the flour is being added.  When enough flour has been added,  the dough will look soft and smooth, not wet and sticky or overly dry with a rough surface.)

Increase the speed to medium, and beat for 5 minutes.  If the dough is too stiff, remove it from the mixer to a floured board and knead it by hand.  Grease a large bowl with a little Flying Olive Garlic EVOO.  Place dough in the bowl and flip it so that the dough has a light covering of EVOO.  Cover bowl of dough with a clean dish towel and let it stand in a warm place (about 80-85°).  When the
dough is doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes to an hour, punch dough down, and let stand 10 minutes

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface;  shape dough into 3 equal balls.  Knead the rosemary into one, the garlic into the next, and the sundried tomatoes into the last.  Make each ball into a rope, about 14-16" long.  Being careful not to stretch the "ropes" too much, braid the bread "ropes" together.  Carefully move the braided bread to a lightly greased baking sheet.  Let rise for about 1 hour.

Bake at 400° for 16 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool on a wire rack.

This bread is great for dipping, for sandwiches. or for making bruschetta

Submitted by Barb L.