Pesto-Pine Nut Bread & Chocolate-Coffee Bread Cupcakes!
The middle and end of the month are usually slated for my ABin5/ HBin5 posts. This month I didn’t do a middle of the month post because I just couldn’t find the time to bake the breads on the schedule. As it happens, I didn’t manage to bake the breads scheduled for the end of this month either.
For the dough:
For filling:
  1. To make walnut pesto (this recipe is from Ritu Dalmiau2019s Italian Khana).
  2. Put 150gm basil leaves, 2 cloves peeled garlic and 50 gm walnuts in a food processor and process till you get a smooth paste.With the processor running, add about 25 ml olive oil in a slow and steady stream.
  3. Stop the machine and add 75 gm freshly grated parmesan and process till the cheese is absorbed. Slowly add another 25 ml of olive oil and process till the pesto is creamy. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. To make the bread : Mix all the ingredients for the dough together. Use a bit more (be judicious) flour if the dough looks very wet. The dough should be moist but should not stick to your hands. Put the dough in a container and cover with plastic wrap or lid, but not tightly. Allow dough to rise for about 2 hours.
  5. After 2 hours of rising, put dough into the refrigerator to chill for at least 3 hours for easy handling. The dough can be kept refrigerated for up to a week. I refrigerated my dough overnight and baked the bread next morning.
  6. When ready to bake, take the dough out and shape the dough into an oval. Lightly dust your work surface with flour and roll the dough out into a rough rectangle about 1/4u201d thick.
  7. Spread the pesto on the rectangle leaving a margin on the sides. Go a bit easy on the pesto or it can be over powering! Sprinkle the pesto nuts evenly over this and then the parmesan cheese.
  8. Fold the sides of the rectangle inwards a bit and then roll the dough with the filling, in jelly roll style. Pinch the dough to make sure it has sealed well.
  9. Now carefully, cut the rolled bread dough into 2 equal halves, lengthwise, with a sharp knife. Twist both halves together like a rope, ensuring the filled sides show on the outside. Place the twisted dough in a greased loaf tin and let it rise for about 1 1/2 hours.
  10. Bake the bread at 180C (350F) for about 30 to 35 minutes till done. Unmould and cool on a rack. Wait till the bread has cooled completely before slicing.
Recipe Notes

Chocolate-Coffee Bread Cupcakes : As I mentioned earlier, the “chocolate” part of the Chocolate Espresso Bread had been calling to me for a while. I stuck to the recipe in the book except for using only all purpose flour for this bread.

I also worked with a quarter of the recipe and used filter coffee instead of espresso. I also decided to make the bread in the form of cupcakes which was one variation suggested by Jeff and Zoe.

I was mentally prepared to dislike the chocolate espresso bread for some unexplainable reason. I just had this feeling and am glad to say I was so wrong!

Made as cupcakes, with sugar sprinkled on top, this bread looks so good. They’re not cupcakes, but when you bite into them you might be forgiven for thinking they are. They do have the texture of bread but are very soft, perhaps because I used only all purpose flour.

A quarter of the recipe gave me 10 cupcakes. Be prepared for the fact that this cupcake style chocolate bread is not at all sweet but has a strong chocolate flavour and is perfect with a cup of coffee or tea.

Here’s a suggestion on a good way to eat these cupcakes. Just cut a “V” shaped cone off the top of one cupcake and fill the depression with strawberry jam or Nutella, and then replace the top of the cupcake. You can find the recipe for the Chocolate Espresso Bread here.

My Pesto-Pine Nut Bread and the Coffee-Chocolate Bread/ Cupcakes are being YeastSpotted!