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Recipe for :

Cottage Cheese Herb Bread
 

This recipe has been reproduced with the kind permission of Linda Stradley who runs the What's Cooking America web site <click here>

Linda says, "My mom was a great cook, but she cooked the typical foods of the 50's of overcooked meat and vegetables. It wasn't until I really got interested in cooking for my family that I discovered the wonders of great food using simple fresh ingredients! I also discovered the love of eating and the problems of weight gain!"

She has always had a fascination with history. Put this together with her love of good food and you have a culinary historian. Linda says, "The research of the origins of foods of America have become an obsession when being introduced to new foods." Traveling with her husband, Don, all around the States, she always combines her pursuit of pleasure and eating with the pursuit of new foods and their history.

She originated the What's Cooking America site in 1997 and continues to maintain it with regular additions. The web site is a continuation of her first cookbook also called What's Cooking America, which she co-authored with her friend Andra Cook. Linda has a new book available called I'll Have What They're Having: Legendary Local Cuisine - for details or to purchase <click here>

A very unusual and delicious bread!

Ingredients

1/4 cup warm water (110°F)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup honey
1 cup non-fat or low-fat cottage cheese
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh or dried lavender flowers
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil leaves
2 eggs, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups plus 3 tablespoons bread flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons instant active dry yeast
Cornmeal (optional for dusting pan)

Method

  • Place all ingredients except cornmeal in bread pan of your bread machine. Select dough setting and press start.

    Note: Check the dough (don't be afraid to open the lid). It should form a nice elastic ball. If you think the dough is too moist, add additional flour (a tablespoon at a time). The same is true if the dough is looking dry and gnarly. Add warm water (a tablespoon at a time).
  • When dough cycle has finished, remove dough from pan and turn out onto a lightly oiled surface. (I use a non-stick cooking spray). Form dough into an oval, cover with a plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • After resting, turn dough bottom side up and press to flatten. For baguettes (long, slender) or boules (round), divide the dough into 2 pieces and shape. For baguettes, fold dough into an envelope by folding the top 1/3 of the way to the bottom. Then fold the bottom a 1/3 of the way over the top. Then press dough with the palm of your hand to make an indentation down the center of the dough and fold the top completely to the bottom, sealing the seam with the palm of your hand.
  • Place on a jelly roll pan dusted with cornmeal. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot to rise until the dough is doubled in bulk, approximately 30 to 50 minutes (depending on how warm your room is).
  • Preheat oven to 400°. After rising, slash or score the loaves with a very sharp knife making three 1/2 inch deep diagonal slashes.
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until nicely browned. (A good check is to use an instant thermometer to test your bread. The temperature should be between 200° and 210 degrees.)
  • Remove from oven and place the loaves on a wire rack until cooled.

Makes 1 large round loaf or 2 small baguettes

© Linda Stradley - What's Cooking America

 

 
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