Kelly chose our bread this month at the Bread Baking Babes this month. As she put it, “Something soft and easy for March”. She chose a Potato, Thyme and Goat Cheese Pavé from World Breads from Pain de Campagne to Paratha. For reasons I will share, I chose to adapt that recipe to make a Potato & Paneer Pavé.
Pavé is French for cobblestone. Pain Pavé are smaller, somewhat flat French bread that are slightly rounded on top. They’re generally shaped as squares/ rectangles, scored sometimes in a criss-cross manner and supposedly resemble cobblestones. Sometimes, Pavé also describes a slightly taller irregularly shaped bread.
The bread is pretty straight forward. Proof the yeast (unless using instant yeast), and mix all the ingredients into a soft, smooth dough. Then let it rise till double, shape and let it rise again. Dust with flour, score and bake till done. That’s it. What makes this bread different is the use of mashed potato, goat’s cheese and fresh thyme.
I have recently found a local cheese maker but they deliver only on Fridays. This meant I would have to wait a week to make this bread. I also didn’t have any thyme on hand. My attempts at growing thyme at home haven’t been successful this season. A visit to the one store I can find it is not happening soon due the Corona virus issue. I had also run out of eggs! Not a great way to start out baking this bread.
So I decided to adapt the recipe somewhat and created a bread with Indian flavours. I substituted paneer for goat’s cheese and Kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves) for the thyme. If you are Indian you know potato, paneer and Kasuri methi work well together with bread or in it. I decided to do without the egg. Please see Kelly’s post for the original Potato, Thyme and Goat Cheese Pavé recipe if you would like to make that.
This bread is traditionally shaped into a rectangle but I chose to keep it round.
Potato & Paneer Pavé
- 2 tsp active dried yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 50 g chilled unsalted butter cut into small cubes
- 1 cup plain warm well mashed potato
- 1 tsp fine salt
- 2/3 cup well crumbled paneer
- 1 tbsp dried/ Kasuri methi leaves
- 3/4 cup to 1milk or water
- Proof the active dried yeast in a little warm milk or water mixed with the sugar. If using instant yeast you can avoid this step and add it directly to the flour.
- Knead by hand if you prefer but I always use a machine if I can and finish off the last bit of kneading by hand. Put all the ingredients except the milk in the bowl of your kneading machine. Run a couple of times to mix well. Add half the milk or water first and start kneading. Then add as much of the milk or water, as required, for a soft, smooth and elastic dough. If your ambient temperature is on the lower side, you may use lukewarm milk or water.
- Turn the dough out onto your working surface and finish the kneading. Shape into a ball and place in a well-oiled bowl, turning to coat it well. Cover loosely and let it rise till it is double in size.This should take about 1.5 hours or so depending on room temperature.
- Lightly knead the risen dough to deflate. Shape it into a round or rectangular loaf. Place on a greased baking tray. Cover loosely and let it rise for about 45 minutes or double in size.
- Lightly dust the top of the shaped dough with flour. Using a sharp blade, score the top of the dough somewhat deeply in a criss-cross pattern.
- Bake at 200C (400F) until golden brown and it sounds hollow when tapped. Cool completely on a rack. Cut into squares or slices to serve.
The Bread Baking Babes are –