Jamie Olivers Twister Bread with Green Pesto Recipe has been taken from the book ‘The Naked Chef’ in the section ‘Bread’ , author is British Chef Jamie Oliver. I have modified this recipe a bit using bread flour instead of strong flour and semolina flour(used in the original recipe), and using mint leaves instead of basil and unsalted cashews instead of pine nuts for the green pesto. The steps of the recipe remains the same as that of the original.
Impress your friends and family with this soft and spongy, gorgeous twister bread having a powerful burst of mint pesto that ripples throughout the bread !! Make sure to read the recipe, not once but twice, gather and ready all the ingredients, before you start so that you can clearly visualize the steps of the recipe.
The green pesto in this recipe can be used for pasta, sandwiches as well as a dipping sauce. The consistency of the pesto should be semi-wet but firm.
- For the bread :
- 2.25 cup enriched flour(bread flour)
- pinch of Sea Salt
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 tsp honey or sugar
- 1 cup lukewarm water
- 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
- some extra flour and semolina for dusting
- For the green pesto sauce :
- ¾ cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves ( the original recipe uses fresh basil leaves)
- 1 small garlic clove
- ¼ cup lightly roasted unsalted cashews
- salt as per taste
- ½ tsp ground black pepper or as required
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or as required
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese or as required
- Dissolve the yeast and honey(or sugar) in half the lukewarm water.
- Combine flour and salt in a big bowl. Mix it using a fork so that the salt is distributed evenly in the flour. As per the original recipe, its preferable to warm the flour.
- Pour all the dissoved yeast mixture and slowly mix in all the dry ingredients until all the yeast mixture is soaked up. Then pour the other half of the tepid water as required, into the bowl and gradually bind all the ingredients to make a moist dough. The dough will appear to be grainy and gritty.
- Now, using your hands knead the mixture. This is the best bit, just rolling, pushing and folding the dough over and over for 5 to 10 minutes, until it forms a soft, smooth but firm dough. This procedure activates the gluten and develops the structure of the dough.
- Lightly flour both your hands and make the dough into a roundish shape. When you squeeze the round and push your finger into it, it springs back beautifully. This is a small test to check if your dough is of right consistency.
- Grease a container with a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil, pop the dough into it and roll it around in the oil. Make light gashes into the dough with a knife - this allows it to relax and prove more quickly. Cover the container with a clingfilm to speed up the proving process. Leave the container in a warm place. Basically, we want the dough to double in size. This proving process helps to develop the flavor of the flour and should take approximately 40 minutes to an hour and a half, depending on the conditions.
- While the bread is proving, this is probably the best time to prepare your green pesto. Put all the ingredients except the olive oil, and the parmesan cheese, into a food processor and blitz into a paste, adding very little water. Take out the mixture into a bowl and add the parmesan cheese. Adjust salt, pepper and olive oil as per taste. There are no real rules for determining the exact measure of ingredients for making a pesto, since as long as the ingredients used are fresh and best, the pesto will always taste superb. Gently stir this mixture and add olive oil if required to bind the sauce and get it to the right consistency- semi-wet but firm.
- Now returning to the bread, once the bread is double its size, it will have an elastic texture to it. Pop the dough onto a warm surface, knead and punch the dough, knocking all the air out of it. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Roll or push each piece of the dough into a ball on a lightly floured surface. Spread it into an approximately 10 inch diameter circle by using a rolling pin. Now gently slide the dough sheet onto a parchment paper. Smear the pesto generously over the sheet of dough, not letting it to spread across the marked outer edges and roll up like a Swiss roll. Then with a really sharp knife cut across into 4cm1.5 inch slices. Place the slices close together on a greased baking tray, cut side upwards(like Chelsea buns).
- Preheat the oven at 425 degrees F or 225 degrees C and bake the Twister Bread for 15 to 20 minutes, until evenly golden brown. Take out the bread and allow it to cool for 30 minutes before eating.