This is probably one of my favorite breads. I used fresh herbs out of our herb garden, but if you'd like, you could use 1 T. dried basil & 1 T.oregano instead.
The first time I made it with fresh herbs, I did go a little overboard. I wanted to use everything I could! LOL In this picture you can see what I used:
parsley, basil, chives, sage, thyme, & even some cilantro. I probably should call this loaf "many herb loaf". LOL Now when I make it I don't use chives & cilantro. Those are good in bread, I just don't use them in this Ialian Herb Bread anymore.
I love how bread looks & smells when it's rising.Italian Herb Bread
2 packages yeast (each package is 2 1/2 t. )
2 C. warm water
2 T. white sugar
1/4 C. olive oil
1 T. salt
1 T. dried basil
1 T. dried oregano
OR fresh herbs of your choice like basil, oregano, thyme, sage, etc...
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. onion powder
1/2 C. grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
6 C. bread flour.
Mix yeast, water, & sugar in bowl & set aside until foamy.
In a large bowl add all of the ingredients except a couple cups of flour. Add in the yeast mixture & stir well. Continue adding the rest of the flour. When it's too stiff to stir, turn out onto table & knead it. Knead for 5-10 minutes or until smooth & silky. Place in a bowl oiled with more olive oil, & turn dough to coat. Cover with towel & set in warm place to rise until double, about 60-90 minutes. Punch down dough to release air. Divide into thirds. Shape into 3 loaves & place into greased 9X5 bread pans. Cover with towel & allow to rise again, for 30-60 minutes until doubled.
Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Remove loaves from pans and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing.
I can NEVER wait, so I slice off the heal, butter it, & eat it while I'm waiting for that 15 minutes. LOL
My family really likes Texas Toast, so sometimes I slice this into thick slices, butter each side, & bake in the oven for 7-14 minutes (depending how dark you want it toasted, we like it toasted, but still soft in the middle), you can flip them half way if you like. Here it is as Texas Toast:
On this day, we had it with Johnny Marzetti & cottage cheese. Oh yum...And a few days later, it really kicked up a bologna sandwich!