I decided to make the “Renewal” menu at the end of the book- Date Night In.
For us, making the menu was inspired totally by the Chocolat Chaud dessert that my Son wanted for dinner. But I decided might as well make the rest.
I’ve been baking a lot of bread lately, and was a little dubious about going away from my current favorite crusty bread recipe- but decided to give the Walnut Bread a go.
I will say- ingredients- super easy. Nothing weird. AND I love that you just throw all the ingredients in a bowl, mix, and let sit overnight. No fussing with transferring to a new bowl, waiting for yeast to activate- anything. VERY easy. You do have to plan a day in advance- but everyone plans dinner a week out- right? (joke)
Day two: Dump bread onto floury surface- and you sort of tuck and twist like making a boule until you have a nice round loaf. That gets Transferred to a flour-towel bowl. (Never tried this technique before.) This is for the second rise while your dutch oven heats up.
Then the tricky part. Transfer your dough to the dutch oven- I did mine on parchment paper. Directions didn’t say to do that- but I couldn’t help it. Had to. My dough totally stuck to my flour-towel and created a weird surface on top of my dough-ball. I was also worried that all of the jostling would affect the rise situation- but no matter-into the oven it goes. Fingers Crossed.
It came out lovely! (Lumpy top aside)
A few notes:
- Next time, I’m going to try letting it rise in a parchment sling instead of the flour towel. We’ll see…
- I was pleasantly surprised at how walnutty it was throughout. I thought that it would taste like a loaf of bread with walnuts in it- not the case. All the dough seemed to soak up the walnut flavor. Yum.
- For me? Salt. I think a generous amount of Maldon salt on top of the loaf would have made it even better.
I would make again if I needed this sort of a loaf. Won’t be replacing my standard because it isn’t quite as versatile- but it is definitely worthy of adding into the rotation.