Prep 2 hrs
Cook 35 mins
The Shakers, who once had a number of active communities in Hew England, were known for their creative use of fresh herbs in cooking and baking. This savory yeast bread is a typical example. It is delicious freshly baked or toasted the following day.
- 2 1⁄4 cups very warm whole milk
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter, unsalted,cut into 1/2 inch pieces,room temperature
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1⁄4 cup warm water
- 2 envelopes active dry yeast
- 1 large egg, beaten to blend
- 6 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour (about)
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
- vegetable oil
- 1 large egg yolk, beaten with
- 1 tablespoon whole milk (for glaze)
- Pour milk into large bowl.
- Mix in sugar, butter and salt; cool to lukewarm.
- Place 1/4 cup warm water in small bowl; mix in yeast.
- Let stand 6 minutes.
- Stir yeast mixture and 1 egg into lukewarm milk mixture.
- Mix in 4 cups flour and beat with a wooden spoon until mixture is smooth.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sponge stand until bubbles appear at edge, about 15 minutes.
- Mix nuts and rosemary into sponge.
- Mix in remaining flour, 1/3 cup at a time, until soft, slightly sticky dough forms.
- Turn dough out onto floured surface and knead until smooth and no longer sticky, sprinkling with flour as needed, aqbout 10 minutes.
- Oil a large clean bowl.
- Add dough, turning to coat.
- Cover with plastic wrap.
- Let dough rise in a warm draft free area until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Grease two 8 1/2 X 4 1/2 X 2 1/2 inch nonstick bread pans with oil.
- Punch down dough and turn out onto work surface.
- Shape into two 8 inch long loaves.
- Place inpans.
- Let rise, uncovered, until almost double in size, about 45 minutes.
- Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 375*F.
- Using serrated knife, make a shallow cut down center of each loaf.
- Brush loaves with glaze.
- Bake until golden and crusty, about 35 minutes.
- Turn out of pans and let cool on racks.