February 16, 2014

Marbled Za'atar Bread

Za'atar a Middle Eastern spice made from the dried herbs, mixed with sesame seeds, dried sumac, and often salt, as well as other spices. Used in Arab cuisine, both the herb and spice mixture are popular throughout the Middle East.  Having tried this spice on flat bread in Mediterranean Bakery I wanted to try making bread with this. 

Marbled Zatar Bread

Bread flour - 3 cups
Skim milk - 1 cup
Sugar - 3 tsp
Salt - 1 tsp
Butter - 1 tsp
Olive oil - 3 tbsp
Yeast - 3 tsp

Za'atar spice - 3- 4 tbsp mixed in 3 tsp of olive oil

1.  Make sure the milk, butter, yeast are all at room temperature.
2.  Disintegrate the yeast in a tsp of sugar with luke warm water.
3.  Mix the bread flour in skim milk, disintegrated yeast, salt, butter and olive oil.  This can be done either by kneading by hand/ or in the kitchen aid mixer/food processor/bread machine dough cycle.
4. Cover the dough with oiled plastic wrap and set in a warm place for a few hours till it is double in size.
5.  Punch the dough and place of a lightly floured surface.
6.  Roll the dough about 3/4 inch thick and cover with oiled plastic wrap.
7.  Take the mixture of zaatar spice mixed in olive oil and spread it over the dough.  Leave a border of 1/2 inch.
8.  Roll up the dough and tuck the ends and place in a prepared bread pan.
9.  Cover with a plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes  or until the dough has risen more than double in size.
10. Preheat the oven to 425F.
11. Remove the plastic wrap and brush the top with olive oil and make light cuts on top with a knife.
12. Bake for 25 -30 minutes till the bread is golden.
13. Cool before slicing the bread.

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