Not all breads are created equal. Some take extreme amounts of time and work, and some require minimal effort for the most incredible flavor. This Rosemary Olive Oil Bread falls under the second option.
The only things you need to make this easy bread are yeast and a positive attitude.
It’s a perfect recipe for beginner bread bakers.
Rosemary Olive Oil Bread Tips
The time-factor deters many from attempting homemade bread. Don’t be fooled!
- The rising of bread is the only truly time-intensive step, and it can be easily kneaded into a rhythm that fits your day. Assemble the dough in the morning, then let it rise in the refrigerator all day. Set it out for its second rising about 2 hours before dinner and voila! Homemade bread to accompany your meal.
- Alternatively, you can let the dough rise once, wrap it tightly in plastic, then freeze it for up to a month. Simply let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for several hours, then bake.
I love to bake my loaves on a preheated pizza stone, but any greased cookie sheet will do the job just fine. (Check out my homemade pizza dough post for even more stone uses and a great dough recipe!)
More Homemade Bread Recipes
- Crock Pot Bread
- Whole Wheat English Muffin Bread
- Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread
- Caramelized Onion and Olive Focaccia
- Cranberry Orange Cinnamon Swirl Bread
- Cinnamon Swirl Bread with Hazelnuts
- Magic Multigrain Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread
Rosemary Olive Oil Bread
- ¾ cup warm water (100-110 F – I recommend taking the temp if you can!)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 packet active dry yeast 1 ¼ ounces or 2 ¼ teaspoons
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- 1 ¼ cups whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour plus extra for kneading
- 1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten* optional, see notes
- 1 ½ tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary divided
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Flaky sea salt such as maldon or fleur de sel
- In a large bowl (or if you will be using a stand mixer, the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook), combine the warm water, honey, and yeast. Let sit 10 minutes to proof. The yeast should look foamy (if it doesn't, the yeast is dead or the water was too hot or too cold; your bread won't rise, so you will need to start over). Stir in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, and vital wheat gluten (if using). Stir in rosemary, salt, garlic, oregano, basil, and pepper.
- Add dry ingredients gradually to the bowl with yeast and stir by hand (or mix with the hook), until the dough forms a ball. If the dough seems dry, sprinkle water over the top 1 tablespoon at a time, until it holds together in a rough ball.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough for 10 minutes by hand (or mix with the dough hook for 8 minutes on medium low), until the dough is smooth and elastic. The dough should be tacky and moist but should not be overtly sticky and cling to your hands. If it is too sticky, add additional all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon at a time, being sure to knead (or mix) it in completely before adding more.
- Lightly coat a clean bowl with nonstick spray or olive oil. Place the dough in the bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until nearly doubled in size, about 1 ½ to 2 ½ hours. (An unheated oven is a great place for this—just don’t forget about the dough and preheat your oven by mistake! Not that I’ve done this…). If your kitchen is extra cool (or your dough is being stubborn), you may need to let it rise for longer. Don't rush the process.
- Once the dough has nearly doubled, lightly flour a work surface and turn the dough out onto it (you do not need to punch it down). Keep a sheet of parchment paper nearby.
- Lightly flour your hands. Gently take the top edge of the dough and stretch it away from you. Fold it up and over so that it touches the center. Repeat with the bottom, then the left and right sides so that you create a rough square.
- With a spatula or bench scraper (or gentle fingers) flip the dough over. Cup your hands around the dough and tuck the edges under to form a round ball, starting at the square's "corners." Place seam-side down on the parchment paper. Cover with a clean towel, then let rise until nearly doubled in size, about 2 to 2 ½ hours more (again, you may need longer depending upon the temperature of your kitchen).
- When it's nearing time to bake, place a pizza stone (if you have one) or Dutch oven in the oven and preheat the oven (with the stone/Dutch oven in it) to 400 degrees F.
- Once the dough has finished its second risen and you are ready to bake, with a sharp knife, cut an “X” in the top of the loaf that is ¼-inch deep to allow steam to escape during baking.
- Using the parchment paper, gently lift the dough onto the preheated stone or into the Dutch oven (if using a Dutch oven, I like to trim two opposite sides of the paper to create a narrower bread sling, which makes it easier to lower in the Dutch oven). Bake for 10 minutes, then remove the dough from the oven and brush the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over the top. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ tablespoon rosemary and a big pinch of flaky salt. Return to the oven and bake 10 to 15 minutes more, until the internal temperature reaches 195 degrees on an instant read thermometer. (If not using an instant read thermometer, look for the top to be golden brown and bread to sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.)
- Transfer the dough to a cooling rack and let cool to (almost) room temperature (if you can stand it), then slice and serve warm.
- Vital wheat gluten can be added to yeast breads that are made with whole-wheat flour to help them rise more effectively. Gluten is responsible for the stretchiness of dough and for the shapes that baked goods hold. Since whole-wheat flour is heavier than its white counterparts the vital gluten gives it an extra boost to create a lighter, fluffier loaf.
- Look for vital wheat gluten in the baking aisle of larger grocery stores or any specialty food store or you can find it online here. You may also omit the vital gluten from the recipe entirely with good results.
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