Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Honey Curry Bread or, Relax Already!

My poor Kurt. He gets really nervous when, an hour or so before we serve dinner to guests, I look up from a cookbook and squeal “oooh! Doesn’t this recipe sound GREAT!?”

He figures that if people are paying us for dinner that we should serve them something we have made at least, oh, I don't know, maybe once before. Me? Well, I figure a life without adventure is not worth living. And I’ve discovered a lot of fantastic recipes this way. Take the Honey Curry Bread for example. It’s an idea that could go either way – either delicious or dreadful. My gut instincts said “yummy” and fortunately, so did the dinner guests.

What you may not be able to tell from the photo above is that the bread is bright gold from the turmeric in the curry. It smells sweet and spicy and is fragrant and flavorful without being overpowering. It is, as they say, a little slice of heaven.

Honey Curry Bread

from Hollyhock Cooks

Makes 1 loaf

¼ cup warm water
1 ½ Tb. Yeast
1/3 cup honey (divided)

2 Tb butter
1 tsp salt
1Tb curry powder
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 ½ cups white flour

1 egg, lightly beaten
Handful of slivered almonds

  1. In a large bowl, dissolve just 1 tablespoon of the honey in warm water and sprinkle the yeast over this. Allow to sit for 10 minutes until foamy.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt the butter with the remaining honey, salt and curry powder. Add the melted butter mixture and the buttermilk to the yeast sponge and use a wooden spoon to stir in the whole wheat flour.
  3. Add the white flour. When the dough is stiff enough to handle, transfer it to a lightly floured surface and continue to knead in the remaining flour until the dough is firm but remains sticky.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a slightly oiled bowl. Cover it with a damp towel and allow it to rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. Punch down the dough, shape it into a loaf or divide it into 3 equal pieces and braid it and put it in a lightly oiled loaf pan. Cover it with a damp towel again and allow it to rise for another 45 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 375. Beat the egg and brush the loaf lightly with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with slivered almonds. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until golden brown on top. Allow the bread to cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes before inverting it onto a cooling rack.