Prune and chocolate bread
This savory and rich bread doubles as a delectable dessert.
Chocolate sweetness and and sweet/tart prune, held together in a sweet dough. Rich – did I say this is rich? And it’s not light. But not cloying at all. And so what if it’s, er, beauty-challenged? Some faces grow on you.
- 1/2 cube fresh yeast (4.5 teaspoons dry active yeast)
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 4 1/2 cup white flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons margarine or unsalted butter
- 2 cups pitted prunes, chopped
- 2 cups chocolate, chopped (I used chocolate chips)
- 1 beaten egg
Put the yeast in a small bowl and dissolve it with 1/2 cup of the water.
Put the flour and salt in a large bowl and mix.
Make a well in the flour/salt and pour the yeast water into it.
Mix the flour in, adding more water as needed to make a soft dough. It should be sticky.
Knead the dough until all the flour and water are incorporated, 5-10 minutes.
Put the dough into a floured bowl. Cover it and let it rise for 1 hour or until doubled.
Preheat the oven to 350° F (180° C).
Push the risen dough down and knead it a few times. Cover it again and leave it alone for 10 minutes.
Add the prunes, chocolate, margarine or butter and the egg. Squish everything in with your hands, it works much better than trying to beat the dough with a spoon.
Lightly flour your work surface and knead the dough just a minute or two, until it can hold a shape.
Now you get to decide if you prefer one large round loaf to slice, or 8-10 buns. In the latter case, tear off lumps, shape them roughly, and bake them only 25-30 minutes.
Cover the loaf (or buns) and let it rise 30 minutes or until it’s light.
Bake for 45 minutes. If baking buns, check for done-ness at 25 minutes, using the toothpick method (poke a new toothpick into the center of a bun and if no crumbs cling to it, the buns are done). Cool on a wire rack.
Note: The recipe calls for baking this in a greased 2-pound loaf pan, but I saw that the dough was too big to fit into mine. So I baked it as a boule. It was less convenient to slice, but somehow impressive.
Adapted from 'Bread' by Eric Treuille and Ursula Ferrigno.