Adding potatoes to bread dough has a long history, notably in Ireland. Wherever wheat is scarce and expensive, potatoes have been used to stretch the flour, producing a nourishing bread. Here the potatoes are cooked in buttermilk, which adds flavor to the dough. The mashed potato produces a moist loaf with a springy texture, and as a bonus, the bread keeps for several days. With its golden crust and soft center, the rosemary-scented bread makes a great sandwich loaf and is a delicious accompaniment to a bowl of tomato-based or bean soup.
Rosemary Potato Bread
- 8 oz potatoes, such as russet, peeled and cut into small cubes
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- ¾ cup warm water (105° to 115°F)
- 3 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 cup bread flour, plus extra for kneading
- 1½ Tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 Tbsp olive oil, for the bowl and the pan
Place the potato cubes in a medium-size saucepan and add the buttermilk, 1 cup water, and ½ teaspoon salt. Cover the pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the potato is very soft, about 30 minutes. Drain well, and then mash the potato cubes in a bowl until they are smooth. Set aside to cool.
Place the yeast and sugar in a small bowl and add the warm water. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and let the mixture sit until it is foamy, 5 to 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat and bread flours, 1½ teaspoons salt, and the rosemary. Make a well in the center and add the yeast mixture, stirring to combine. Stir in the cooled mashed potatoes.
Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead it, adding more bread flour as needed, until it is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Form the dough into a ball.
Lightly oil a large bowl with the olive oil, place the dough in the bowl, and roll it around to coat it with the oil. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and let it sit in a warm, draft-free place until the dough has doubled in size, about 1½ hours.
Generously oil a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.
Gently punch down the dough to deflate it, and then form it into a loaf. Transfer the dough to the prepared loaf pan, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, set it in a warm, draft-free place, and let the dough rise until it has almost doubled in size, 30 to 45 minutes.
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 375°F.
Bake until the bread is golden brown and has pulled away from the sides of the pan, about 45 minutes. Remove the loaf from the pan and inseart an instant-read thermometer in the center of the bottom of the loaf. It should register 190 F. If it doesn't return the loaf to the pan and bake it a few minutes longer.
Remove the bread from the pan and let it cool on a wire rack completely before slicing.
Makes 1 loaf.
About the Author
|Click Here to Purchase The Earthbound Cook||How well do you know your herbs?||Next: Hearty Potato Leek Soup|
Excerpted from The Earthbound Cook Copyright 2010 by Myra Goodman. Used by permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc. New York All Rights Reserved