Martha Stewart’s Olive Oil Bread
Women tend to like a guy who can work with his hands. And while cooking might not be seen as the most manly of all activities… baking, and specifically baking bread with yeast, should be.
It’s a violent procedure. The kneading, the mixing, the insanely hot oven. No wilting flower could handle being up to their elbows in dough so sticky it could be used by punk teenagers to epoxy quarters to sidewalks at the state fair.
It’s also a lot of chemistry. Seems like it could be pretty easy to screw up if you don’t know what you’re doing. That’s why I put it off for so long until this last weekend. I had worked my tail off for the previous two days on various projects work and non-work related, and I just wanted to spend an afternoon doing what I wanted to do. But that didn’t include laying around on the couch. Some would say I don’t know how to relax.
Anyway… Enter Martha Stewart and her Baking Handbook. Some of the breads in there are ridiculously insane. But one of the first ones is for an Olive Oil Bread that has barely more than five ingredients. Flour, water, yeast, Olive oil, some salt and time. That’s really about it. And you don’t even need fresh yeast like the recipe calls for. I used a package of regular red star yeast and it worked out okay for me.
After about four hours (much of it is spent waiting) you should have a basic but still very impressive loaf of bread to pull out of the oven. It smells terrific, keeps well, and can be used to make one of the world’s best sandwiches.
And for the next morning? The Olive oil bread makes amazing toast. Get some natural peanut butter, y’know the kind you stir when you first open up, and slice off a decent sized piece of your bread. The olive oil in the bread actually sizzles while it’s toasting. Top with peanut butter… and bask in your awesomeness.
(Pic from Method)