Syrian Onion Bread

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Today is World Bread Day. Kochtopf is hosting the third annual World Bread Day baking round up, and I made a batch to help celebrate.  In the spirit of the event, I decided to make something that I hadn't tried before and from another part of the world.  I came across a version of this recipe in Bread by Christine Ingram.  I made a few adjustments in order to achieve a smooth dough and account for dehydrated yeast. 

This bread is light and yeasty.  It expertly soaks up pasta sauce or gravy, but can also be split to use like pita bread.  The flavor combination in the topping is quite unique, but it works well.

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Syrian Onion Bread
Adapted from Bread by Ingram

Ingredients

4 C bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 package yeast
1.25 C lukewarm water (plus extra as needed)

4 Tbl finely chopped onion
1 tsp ground cumin
3 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp chopped fresh mint
2 Tbl olive oil

lightly flour 2 baking sheets

Method

Sift flour and salt together in a large bowl.

Mix the yeast with the water and cover with plastic film.  Let it rest in a warm place for ten minutes.  You should see bubbles/froth on the top if your yeast is active.

Add the yeast mixture to the center of the flour and mix to a firm dough.

Turn out on a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Slowly add more water after several minutes of kneading, if necessary. 

Place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with clear film. Leave to rise in a warm place for one hour or until doubled in bulk.

Punch down the dough and turn on to a lightly floured surface. Fold the dough over on itself once or twice and divide into 8 equal pieces.  Roll each out to 5-6 inch rounds, making them slightly concave. Prick each round all over with fork tines and space well apart on the sheets. Cover and leave to rise for 20 minutes.

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Preheat oven to 400F.

Mix the remaining ingredients in a small bowl.

Brush the breads with olive oil and sprinkle the topping evenly over each round.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden.  Serve warm.

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