My wonderful husband built our first Sukkah. We got the poles and part of the Sukkah covering for free. The rest of the covering was from some canvas cloth that we had never used. And, we collected reeds, bougainvillea and tree branches for the rooftop. It is so beautiful, it reminds me of a chuppah (wedding canopy). It really brought me to tears when I saw the finished product because I have wanted to have a Sukkah ever since I moved to Israel. I missed decorating the Sukkah that my great-grandfather built. We used to hang fruit from the walls. I have such wonderful memories of that. Now we have started our own tradition.
I will be blogging about a special Sukkah adventure and a special meal on Sunday. Instead of the usual Challah, I decided to make a bread I had never tried before, Corsican Basil Bread. We planted some very fragrant basil that I have been meaning to add to bread dough for quite a while. This bread is very easy to make and the result was fantastic, although I should have put in a little more basil to accentuate the taste.
The recipe calls for the basil to be put on top of the bread and I decided to mix it into the dough. The recipe also said to make a puree, but the mixture was more minced than pureed.
500g (1lb) white bread flour
25g (1 tablespoon) yeast
1 cup + 2-1/2 tablespoons water, warmed to 26C (80F)
2-1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup basil
3-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
Puree the basil and olive oil in a blender or a food processor.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast and water. Mix well, incorporating the salt at the end. Then mix in the basil puree.
Knead the dough for about 20 minutes. Place the dough in a clean oiled bowl, cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise for about 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
Punch down the dough and form it into a round ball. Place the dough on a baking tray covered with a towel and let rise for approximately 1 hour at room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 220C (440F). Just before baking, score the top of the bread with a sharp knife.
Reduce the temperature to 190C (380F) and throw a small amount of water onto the bottom of the oven to create steam. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the bread is nicely browned.