Tomato Bread with Sundried Tomatoes

This is one of the loaves we used as a weekly special for customers virtually from the start of the microbakery because it was so popular.

The  simple but very useful idea for this came from Rick Coldman, friend and baker at Mair’s Bakehouse down in South Wales. To create a variation on a basic loaf, simply replace a third of the water in a recipe with tomato sauce or even just tinned tomatoes.

I deepened the flavour a little with the addition of a little rye and pushed it up market a bit by adding sun dried tomatoes. You can use quite a spicy tomato sauce because the flavours dissipate in the bread dough.

Make and cool a tomato sauce.

Soak and dry the sun dried tomatoes. Cut into halve or thirds according to their size.

Mix all the ingredients except the sundried tomatoes and knead using your normal method. If you’re new to baking check out the Sourdough pdf under the Library Menu. Before your final knead flatten the dough into a rectangle and spread half of the sundried tomatoes over half of the dough area. Fold the other half of the dough over the sundried and press out again into a rectangle. Spread the remaining tomatoes over half of the surface and fold over the remaining dough. Fold the dough a few times to ensure an even distribution of the tomatoes.

Form into a rough ball, place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover. Allow to ferment for about four hours stretching each hour for the first three hours. This is not essential but will improve the dough structure.

Alternatively ferment overnight in the fridge.

Prepare a proving basket. Shape the dough and place it in the basket seam side up. Cover and leave for 3½-4 hours checking with the finger tip test after 3 hours.

Preheat the oven to about 210C.

Gently turn out the dough onto a baking sheet floured with wholemeal rye. Slash and bake for about 50 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack