Dana Treat – Treat Yourself

Martha Kind of Let Me Down

Posted August 2, 2010

Yeast Bread Sticks
Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Hors d’Oeuvres Handbook
Makes about 5 dozen

1 ¼-ounce package active dry yeast (2 teaspoons)
2 cups warm water
1½ tbsp. honey
5 tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for brushing
5¾ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
4 tsp. kosher salt

In a medium bowl, combine the yeast and ¼ cup of the water.  Set aside to proof for 5 minutes.  Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining 1¾ cups water with the honey and the olive oil.  Stir the honey mixture into the yeast.  Set aside.  Brush the inside of a large bowl with olive oil.  Set aside.

In another large bowl, combine the flour, Parmesan, and salt.  Pour the wet yeast mixture over the dry flour mixture.  Using your hands, combine until the flour mixture is completely incorporated; the dough will be sticky.

Transfer the wet mixture to a lightly floured board.  Knead the dough until soft and elastic, about 5 minutes.  (DT: I used the dough hook on my Kitchen Aid for the kneading.)  Transfer the dough to the reserved large bowl, brush the top of the dough with olive oil, and cover with plastic wrap.  Set aside in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1½ hours.

Heat the oven to 425ºF.  Divide the dough evenly into 4 batches.  Wrap 3 batches in plastic wrap and set aside.  Cut the remaining batch into 16 pieces.  Using your fingers, roll one piece at a time on a lightly floured surface into 16-inch-long sticks.  Transfer the sticks to 2 baking sheets, placing them about 1 inch apart.  Cover with plastic wrap, set aside in a warm place, and let proof for 30 minutes.  Repeat with another batch of dough and 2 more sheet pans.  While the second batch is proofing, proceed with the first batch.

Just before baking, brush each stick with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.  Bake, rotating the sheets once, until lightly browned, about 10 to 12 minutes.  The bread sticks can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days.

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