Another bread from the Provencal bakery Chez Auzet in Cavaillon, France.
ONION and WHITE WINE BREAD
adapted from Confessions of a French Baker by Peter Mayle and
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 1 1/2 cups diced onions
• 1/4 cup white wine
• 1 3/4 cups (8 ounces) unbleached King Arthur all-purpose flour
• 1 3/4 cups (8 ounces) unbleached King Arthur bread flour
• 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
• 5/8 cup water (90 - 100˚F)
• up to 5/8 cup additional white wine
• 4 1/2 teaspoons (1/2 ounce) instant yeast
1. Melt the 2 tablespoons butter over medium-low heat. Add the diced onions and sauté, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and slightly golden. Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Drain the onions, reserving any accumulated liquid. Set both aside to cool.
2. Sift the flour and salt together into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the dough hook. Sprinkle the yeast over the mixture and mix on medium to low speed, gradually adding the 5/8 cup water and the deglazing liquid plus additional white wine to equal 5/8 cup, and mix until the dough comes away from the bowl, between 5 and 10 minutes.
3. Remove the dough from the mixing bowl and set it on the counter to rest for 10 minutes. Return it to the mixing bowl and place it so the dough hook plunges into the middle of the dough. Mix on medium speed until the dough is soft and pliable, about 15-20 minutes. (I needed to add additional water, little by little to achieve the soft dough). At this point add the onions. I found I had the best results incorporating the onions if I took the dough out of the bowl and kneaded the onions in by hand.
4. When the onions are incorporated into the dough, gather it up in your hands in a rough ball. Bring the full length of your thumbs into the center of the ball so that they meet, and stretch the dough from the center out. Turn the dough a quarter turn and stretch the dough again the same way, creating a smooth ball. Transfer the dough to a large mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, and set aside until the dough doubles in size, at least one hour.
5. Gently remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a clean surface. Cut the dough into 2 pieces and shape into 2 smooth balls again, as you did before the first rise. On a surface, free from drafts, lay a kitchen towel and dust with flour. Place the balls on the towel and cover with plastic wrap or damp towel. Leave the loaves to proof at room temp until they double in size, at least 20-25 minutes.
6. Shape the loaves by first patting down the balls to allow the gasses to disperse. Gather up each piece of dough and again, shape into 2 smooth balls.
7. Place the loaves on the kitchen towel dusted with flour and cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel. Let the loaves rise at room temperature for the final time until they have doubled in size.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450˚F. Carefully place the loaves on a baking sheet. Brush them with water using a pastry brush. With a sharp razor blade, cut the surface of each loaf by scoring it from end to end in 2 swift motions.
9. Just before you are ready to slide the baking sheet into the oven, spray the inside of the oven with water and close the door immediately. Put the bread in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until it makes a hollow sound when tapped on the bottom. Let cool on a rack. MAKES 2 LOAVES