Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Roasted Potato and Onion Bread

It has been said that potatoes were fist introduced to breads in order to stretch out the wheat in times of crop troubles. Fine, seems reasonable. Potatoes have historically been seen as the crops of the poor.

Fortunately, people discovered, during these times, that the humble spud also adds beautiful taste and texture to bread. Especially if you roast that potato first. And if a couple of onions should fall into the mix? Even better.

Delightfully savoury, perfect for crostini, this roasted potato and onion bread will be perfect for your next breadbasket.

Roasted Potato and Onion Bread - slightly crumpled as my French bread pan didn't want to let go of it. Ah well. Even wrinkled bread tastes wonderful.
Roasted Potato and Onion Bread
adapted from Jeffrey Hamelman's Bread
for the Mellow Bakers
makes 3 loaves

The night before:

Pâte fermentée
Bread flour - 9.6 oz
Water - 6.2 oz
Salt - 1 tsp
Dry, instant yeast - 1/8 tsp

Mix all these ingredients in a small/medium bowl, cover and let sit out overnight while you get a good night's sleep. (12-16 hours)

The next day:

Potatoes - 8 oz
Onions - 9.6 oz

Take your potato(es) and prick it a few times with a fork.
Rub with olive oil and sprinkle with a bit of S&P.
Roast until tender, about 40 minutes - depending on size. Larger potatoes will take longer.
While spuds are roasting, throw in the onions, sliced thin and tossed with a small amount of olive oil and S&P. They will be finished roasting before the spuds, keep an eye on them. 
Let roasted spuds and onions cool before making the final dough.

Final dough
Bread flour - 1 lb, 1.6 oz
Whole wheat flour - 4.8 oz
Water - 13 oz
Salt - 1 Tbsp
Instant, dry yeast - 1½ tsp
Roasted potatoes - all
Roasted onions - all
Pâte fermentée - all

Throw all the ingredients, except the roasted onions and the pâte fermentée, into your stand mixer.
Mix on low speed with the dough hook until combined, 3 minutes.
Add pâte fermentée in chunks on low speed. When incorporated, add the onions.
Adjust hydration if necessary.
Mix for 3-4 minutes on second speed.
Form into a ball and let rest 45 minutes, covered.
Fold and let rest another 45 minutes, covered.
Divide into three pieces.
On lightly floured board, form each into a rough ball and let rest 10 minutes, covered with tea towels.
Form each ball into a loaf (I used my Chicago Metallic French bread form) and let rise 1¼ hours or until doubled in size. For shaping videos, click here.
Preheat oven, with stone, to 440°F.
Slash bread and bake approximately 40 minutes, less for long, skinny loaves.
Let cool on racks.
Eat with lusty abandon. And butter.
This bread has been Yeastspotted!