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Flavorful Fridays: Hearty Breadsticks

June 25, 2010

Bread is often a staple of any meal in our home. It makes a delicious way to sop up extra sauce and dressing, and it comes in handy as an additional utensil (better than using your fingers and tastier than using a knife to help get those little straggling pieces of food onto the fork). A couple nights ago I had a hankering for breadsticks, and not the brittle, tasteless sticks that you find in cheap Italian restaurants. No, I wanted a hearty breadstick that would be able to hold its own alongside my recently made Bolognese sauce. I made my usual pizza dough, rolled it in breadstick shapes, topped it like I would focaccia, and put it in the oven. I think we probably could have made an entire meal out of our breadsticks and a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Will often asks for these, so I know that they are a hit. Give them a try, and I’d love to know what you think (or what you add to make them your own).

Liana’s Hearty Breadsticks

Ingredients:

3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup whole wheat flour

1 package quick-rise yeast

1 Tablespoon sugar

1 Tablespoon salt (I use a little less than a Tablespoon)

1-1/4 cups warm water

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped

1/2 Tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 Tablespoons olive oil

Pinch of salt

1/2 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated

Directions:

Set up your food processor with the dough blade. In the food processor, combine the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, yeast, sugar, and salt, and pulse to mix. With the motor running, add the warm water and olive oil in a steady stream, and then pulse until the dough comes together in a rough mass, approximately 12 seconds. If the dough does not form into a ball, sprinkle with 1-2 teaspoons of water and pulse again until dough forms mass. The dough should be somewhat tacky to touch but not sticky.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Gently knead the dough and mold into a smooth ball. Set the dough in a large oiled bowl; cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm place. Let rise (until nearly doubled in size) approximately 1-1/2 hours.

When the dough is ready, divide into four balls. Roll out into long sticks. Combine the rosemary, thyme, garlic, olive oil, and salt in a bowl. Mix well and let sit for 10 minutes. Brush tops of breadsticks with olive oil mixture. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top. Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes, or until slightly browned. Serve and enjoy!

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