This month, the Tuesdays with Dorie gang had a total of three challenges to choose from – Hazelnut Biscotti, Semolina Bread and Blueberry-Nectarine Pie.
Despite the heat, I knew I just had to try out the Semolina Bread. As much as I love a sweet treat, I love a good loaf of homemade bread even more.
Thankfully, after a few days of unrelenting heat, last Sunday dawned a little cloudy and swiftly turned outright rainy, washing away the heat and giving our city a much-needed break from the drought. Perfect weather for baking… rainy days and bread just go together, like blueberries and cream, beaches and pina coladas, and Simon and Garfunkel.
Not great photography weather, though.
So as if the heavens above had heard me muttering about bad lighting and grainy photos, the rain finally stopped and the skies began to clear just as I popped the loaf into the oven to bake.
And as I pulled the loaf from the oven about 45 minutes later, all golden brown and wreathed in that irresistible fresh bread aroma, the sun finally peeked out to fill the entire house with a golden early-evening glow. (Oh golden hour, how do I love thee?)
I can’t blame the sun for wanting to give this bread a little love, mind you, because it’s pretty damn gorgeous.
And the taste? Oh my, was it ever worth the whopping six hours the dough spent rising. Delicately, shatteringly crisp on the outside and with a tender, buttery crumb on the inside, it was absolutely perfect just on its own, without even a speck of butter. Swoon.
It also went quite nicely with paper-thin slices of Niagara prosciutto for dinner that night, and toasted up beautifully the next morning for breakfast.
In brief, it’s just about the most perfect bread I’ve ever made.
My advice? Make this loaf. Call in sick to work, clear your calendar, send the kids or the pets to your parents’ house for the day… just make it.
In keeping with the TWD ground rules, I am not posting the recipe for this amazing bread. However, you can find it on page 102 of Baking with Julia (seriously, you need to buy a copy of this book!), or by visiting one of the hosts’ blogs: Renee of The Way to my Family’s Heart and Anna of Keep it Luce.