Porcini and Truffle Bread

Place the flour in a large bowl,add the sugar and salt and with opened fingers, stir through with your hand to mix well. Add the yeast and repeat the mixing. Now make a deep well in the centre and pour in the olive oil and about 350ml of the water. In a figure 8 movement fold the flour into the water and olive oil. DON’T OVER MIX!! You want a loose, soft dough, so don’t force into a hard ball. Trickle in a little water at a time to achieve this soft, stretchy texture.
Wet your other hand and slide the dough from your mixing hand. Tip the dough onto an oiled surface. Wash your hands and then oil them. Pick up the dough and throw it onto the surface as if bowling a ball over-arm, but keeping hold of one end so the dough elongates when it hits the surface. Repeat this action about 20 times until the dough tightens and becomes smooth. Place on an oiled tray and turn over so it is oiled on both sides. Lay a sheet of clingfilm over the top and leave it somewhere warm until doubled in size. Bring the dough back to an oiled
surface, pull the edges out and then fold them into the centre to create a large mushroom shape. Press down with your palms to expel some of the air bubbles. Place on an oiled tray and, working from the centre outwards, knuckle the dough to fill the tin, use your palms too. If the dough doesn’t quite fit, leave it for 15 minutes and it will be easier. Meanwhile, make the topping. Simply finely chop everything and mix together, and stir in the olive oil. When the dough is nice and springy use your fingers to make dimples, then smother the surface with the porcini mixture. Bake in a preheated oven at 220°C/200°C Fan/Gas 7 for 20-25 minutes until risen and deliciously golden. Cool for 10 minutes on a rack before demolishing!

Also try: zesty gremolata topping
Mix together: 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, 1 tablespoon chopped coriander, 1 teaspoon each of orange and lemon zest, 2 fat garlic cloves finely grated with 1 teaspoon sea salt, 1 medium red chilli finely chopped and 4 tablespoons olive oil.


Serves 8


750g bread flour
7g fast action yeast
1 level teaspoon sugar
1 rounded teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
Approximately 540ml warm water
50g dried porcini soaked in 50ml boiling water
1 fat garlic clove, finely grated with
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon truffle (tartufo) paste
50g Parmesan, finely grated
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 long stems rosemary, leaves finely chopped
1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper
50ml olive oil