First up to bat (trumpet sound announcing the title) is the Turkish Pear Coffee Bread. This is not a coffee cake, which I was kind of expecting. Don't worry. It is just as good. In fact, it was excellent. My family ate the entire almost lb loaf in one setting over breakfast. It was glorious. The fact that the dough was already in made and waiting to be baked the morning of, was even better. I pulled it out of the fridge, set a timer, started coffee, awhile later someplace in my second cup of coffee I preheated the oven, and threw it in..... breakfast was served 30 minutes later and my kitchen was still clean. That is a good breakfast if you ask me.
The first thing that happens is the smell... that smell of baking bread that waves and glides through the air filling your house is welll nothing short of amazing. The smell that drives you crazy since you want to cut it and devour it as soon as it comes out of the oven. But you wait until it has time to cool. I have had so many things fall apart on me because I have had trouble waiting for amazing smelling food to cool. Then you taste it... the first taste is texture. Its moist and soft on the inside but a bit crunchy on the outside. Then you taste the spices, the warm spices of cinnamon and cardamom, that make you feel like someone is hugging you. Then you just eat until its all gone. Try it!!!
makes 2 almost one pound each loaves
one for now
one for later
- 1/8 cup whole wheat flour
- 3 cups all purpose flour, unbleached
- 2 tsp ground coffee, gingerbread (I will up this next time since I couldn't taste it)
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/8 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 Tbs yeast (this is 1/2 Tbs + 1/4 Tbs) or one packet
- 1/2 Tbs course kosher salt
- 1/8 cup vital wheat gluten (very easy to find at sprouts or trader joes)
- 2 Tbs canola oil
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- slightly less than 1/2 cup of water
- 1 cup pear applesauce defrosted from the freezer (click on it for the recipe)
- 1 large eggs beaten
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/8 cup plain Greek yogurt
1. Whisk all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. I used my new sifter and had an easy time incorporating all those wonderful spices into the flour.
4. Dough is now ready to use or store in the fridge or freezer in 1 pound increments.
5. If you freeze it defrost in the refrigerator and on baking day continue on with step 7.
6. The day you are baking it: Take half of it and shape it into a ball by stretching the sides around to the bottom of the ball. Use a little bit of flour on your work surface as needed - use a light hand. Aim for a narrow looking oval.
7. Allow the dough to rest one more time in its new shape loosely covered on a buttered baking sheet or pan. I sprinkled a little bit of course cornmeal on my pan too to prevent sticking. If the dough is fresh you can start baking in 40 minutes. If the dough has been in the fridge or freezer please wait for 90 minutes.
9. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until its richly browned and firm. The cookbook also gives specific instructions on baking on a baking stone. If you have one, you may want to read this book for yourself and gain some really incredible advice.
10. Allow the bread to cool on a rack before slicing.... the really hard part.
Eat and enjoy!! Save the remaining loaf of dough for the cinnamon rolls I will post tomorrow. They are amazing! Don't miss out.