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Pesto Braided Loaf 



For 1 loaf

  • 2.5 cup flour 

  • 2 tsp dry yeast 

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tbsp olive oil 

  • 1 cup lukewarm water 

  • approx. 120g pesto (vegan or normal) 



Making the Dough: 

  1. In a mixing bowl, add flour, salt, instant yeast and mix well.

  2. Combine the lukewarm water and olive oil. Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and pour the water-oil mixture and mix well with your finger tips. 

  3. Heat water in a bowl till lukewarm. I heated it in microwave at high for 1 min. Mix till a soft dough forms and then pour out onto a lightly floured surface and knead well for 5-7 minutes (until it is smooth and becomes elastic - do not add too much more flour whilst kneading). 

  4. Place the dough in a well greased bowl and dab the top of the dough with some olive oil. Cover with cling film and let the dough rise for 1 hour or till it doubles in size.


Assembling the Loaf:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a bread tin with baking paper. 

  2. After 1 hour, remove the cling film and gently press the dough to deflate and knead for a minute.

  3. Lightly flour a work surface and place the dough on it. Using a rolling pin, gently roll the dough into a rectangle (18 x 12 inches). Use your hands around the edges to perfect the shape.

  4. Drop the entire pesto in the middle of the rectangle dough and spread all around leaving just 1cm around the edges.

  5. Roll the length side of the rectangle tightly just like you roll a mat and seal the edge well. Now the dough will resemble a log.

  6. Using a sharp knife, cut the log into 2 lengthwise and gently turn the 2 pieces so that the pesto stuffing faces top.

  7. Pinch and seal the top corners of both the pieces and lift one piece over the other and plat just like a braid.

  8. Transfer the braided bread to the loaf tray, cover and let rise for 30 minutes. 

  9. Place the loaf tin in the middle of the oven and bake for 35 minutes. Rest the bread in the tin for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wired rack to cool down. 

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