Garden Herb Loaf

4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons white sugar
2 (.25 ounce) packages instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 Tbls fresh marjoram
1 Tbls fresh thyme
1 Tbls fresh rosemary
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup butter
1 egg
1 tablespoon butter, melted



In large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, salt, and herbs.

Heat milk, water, and 1/4 cup butter until very warm (120-130 degrees F); stir into dry ingredients. Stir in egg and enough remaining flour to make soft dough.

Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 4-6 minutes. Cover; let rest on floured surface 10 minutes.

Divide dough into 3 equal pieces. Roll each piece to 30 inch rope. Braid ropes; pinch ends to seal. Tie knot in center of braid; wrap ends around knot, in opposite directions, and tuck under to make round loaf. Place on greased baking sheet. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubles in size, about 20 to 40 minutes.



Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 to 35 minutes or until done, covering with foil during last 10 minutes of baking to prevent excess browning. Melt remaining butter; brush over loaf. Sprinkle with additional herbs, if desired. Remove from sheet; let cool on wire rack.


From Full Moon Natives recipe files