Monday, August 28, 2017

Tomato and Black Olive Bread

The book, Make Ahead Bread, is filled with recipes for breads which allow you to prepare the dough the day before, and bake the next day. Most of the prepared bread dough are first allowed to rise, then deflate, and left to slow-rise in the refrigerator overnight. Great if you do not have enough of time to spend on making bread on one single day as it could take hours to make a loaf of bread or almost the whole day depending on the type of  bread you are making.

I've made this fabulous loaf, Tomato and Black Olive Bread, but did not refrigerate the dough overnight. I mixed the dough and let it rise, both times on the kitchen counter, and bake on the same day itself, since I am not rushing for time. It turned out fine. 

The recipe given below is for two large loaves, so I have scaled down to half to make only one loaf. The olives are very moist even though I've used some paper towels to pat them dry. I use the stand mixer to mix the dough, then remove it and hand-knead gently when I added the olives, as the olives are quite fragile and breaks easily. The dough is quite sticky, so I've added more flour. It will still be a little sticky, but will firm up on the second rising. Just dust the working surface lightly with flour and your hands too, when handling the dough.

The dough after the final rising.

The bread bakes up with a lovely golden brown crust.

This is one fabulous bread. With moist, soft crumbs and very tasty from the tomato juice and the black olives. Makes a nice sandwich bread and also good with stew.

Tomato and Black Olive Bread
(Make Ahead Bread, Donna Currie)
makes two 12-inch round loaves
1 cup room temperature water
1 teaspoon instant yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
5 to 5-1/2 cups bread flour, plus more as needed
1 cup tomato juice
1-1/2 tsp teaspoon kosher salt
One 6-ounce can pitted sliced black olives, drained well
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Cornmeal, for the pan

On Prep Day
  1. Combine the water, yeast, sugar, 5 cups of flour, the tomato juice, and salt and knead by hand (mix first in a large bowl, then turn out and knead) or in a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, until the dough is elastic.
  2. Add the olives and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and continue kneading until the olives are distributed throughout the dough. If the olives were very wet and the dough becomes very loose after adding them, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. The dough should be soft, but not stioky. The dough will firm up a bit during refrigeration.
  3. Drizzle the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a gallon-size zip-top plastic bag; place the dough in the bag and massage the dough a bit to coat the dough with the oil. Zip the bag closed and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours

On Baking Day
  1. Remove the bag from the refrigerator, and sprinkle a baking sheet with cornmeal.
  2. Dust your work surface lightly with flour and divide the dough in half. Form each half into a large ball. Hold one of the balls of dough with both hands, with the bottom of the dough resting on the counter. Turn the dough - clockwise or counter-clockwise, your choice - as though the dough is a large lightbulb and you're screwing it into the countertop. You'll feel the "skin" on the outside of the dough ball begin to tighten as you do this. When the outside of the dough ball and place it on the baking sheet, leaving room between them to rise. You can also opt to bake the loaves on two separate sheets to make sure they absolutely don't touch during baking.
  3. Cover the loaves with plastic wrap and set the pan aside until the dough has doubled in size and whenyou poke the side with a fingertip, the indentation remains or fills in slowly, about 45 minutes in a warm room, depending on how cool the loaves were when you finished working with them.
  4. About 30 minutes before the dough has finished rising, heat the oven to 350F.
  5. When the dough has risen, remove the plastic and bake the loaves until they are nicely browned and the internal temperature reaches 195F on an instant-read thermometer, about 35 minutes. Let the loaves cool completely on a rack before slicing.

kitchen flavours notes :
made half a recipe for 1 loaf of bread with the following adjustments ;

  • the dough was rather sticky, so I've added a little bread flour. I used in total, 3 cups of bread flour.
  • use scant 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • the rest of the ingredients, scaled down to half  to make only one loaf 

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #20 hosted by 


  1. this bread looks stunning Joyce !!
    I love make bread!

  2. Soft and tender..and I like the natural colour from tomato juice. Excellent, Joyce.

  3. This looks great, Joyce! Love black olives in bread.

  4. What a beautiful loaf Joyce. The colour is so pretty and it must be packed with flavour.

  5. Looks so delicious. I love the addition of tomato flavour and olives.

  6. Looks great, I like the idea of olives in breads!