Monday, June 29, 2009

Tortano: Italian Bread with Ham, Cheese and Olive Filling!

Ham and cheese again ^ ^, couldn't help if I have a lot of this combination in my blog haha! Because they are so good together, right?

This time, the dough is the Italian bread that uses durum flour which gives the bread a golden color and good crumb. The filling is the combination of ham, mozzarella cheese, olive and basil (actually, I think there could be a lot of possibility, sauté onion can be great too, or fill it up with whatever your heart desired ^ ^. But beware of the saltiness of the filling, as the dough is a bit salty, or you can reduce the salt from 1 tbsp to 2 tsp, and your bread will raise a bit faster than the giving time.)

If you don't have the durum flour, you can use all bread flour, but the texture of the bread will be more like foccacia.

Anyway, this bread is really great esp. when you going to a picnic, because the dough cover all the filling inside, just slice it when you ready to eat, and enjoy the freshness and deliciousness of this bread.

Tortano: Italian Bread with Ham, Cheese and Olive Filling
Makes 1 loaf

Instant yeast
300 ml (1/2 pint)
Tepid water
2 tablespoons
Olive oil
1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon
Flaked salt
150 g (5 oz)
Durum wheat flour
270 g (9 1/2 oz)
Bread flour


200 g (7 oz)
Mozzarella cheese
200 g (7 oz)

1 handful of pitted olives

1 bunch of fresh basil

Put the bread flour, durum flour and yeast in a bowl, whisk to combine, add and salt whisk again. Pour the liquids mixture into the bowl.

Use large spoon (or pastry scraper) to mix everything together, and knead briefly to bring all the ingredients together.
Take the dough out of the bowl and knead.

Knead by using the heel of your hands to compress and push the dough away from you, then fold it back over itself (see the picture here). Give the dough a little turn and repeat. Put the weight of your body into the motion and get into a rhythm. Keep folding over and compressing the dough.

Knead for 10-15 minutes or until the dough is soft, pliable, smooth and slightly shiny, almost satiny, the dough will stop sticking to your hand but it will be a bit blister from the grain of the durum flour.

Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave the dough to prove for about 30 minutes.

Press the dough into a rectangle about 1 cm (1/2 in) thick. Don’t roll it as then the air trapped in the dough wilt be squeezed out.
Place the mozzarella cheese and put in layers with the hams, olives and basil on top of the dough.
Brush the edges with water and roll up the dough as you would a Swiss roll. Shape it into a circle.

Preheat the oven to 250°C/500°F/9as 10.

Put the loaf onto a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper, and leave to prove under a tea towel for about 30 minutes.
Put the bread in the oven, then reduce the temperature to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and bake for 20—25 minutes or until golden brown.

Tortano: Italian Bread with Ham, Cheese and Olive Filling!

1 comment:

  1. This looks really yummy!

    I just found your site and was looking back through the posts and found some delicious food I want to make!

    You have inspired me to make my first real bread without the help of my mom ^^ I am only 19 but I love to dabble in all of this! Plus I hold an annual tea party with friends and saw some great recipies from here I will use!

    So I hope this goes well! Thanks so much for sharing you love of cooking with me ♥



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