One of my friends loves olive bread.

How can you blame him? It’s pretty tasty. When we go grocery shopping together he grabs one of the olive rolls as we are about to get in the check out line, munches on it as we wait and exclaims how awesome olive bread is.

He moved recently, so he doesn’t live near that grocery store anymore which means he hasn’t been getting his olive bread fix. He’s also just started nursing school and he has a lot of homework, so I haven’t seen him much. I texted him earlier this week and gave him grief about not seeing him for the last month. He apologized and said I could come over for dinner that night. I could tell he was really stressed, so before I headed over to his place I made some olive bread dough. He said it helped a lot.

This is a very simple recipe and the dough is nice and light. The addition of whole wheat flour give it a really nice mouth. The next time I make it, I’m going to let it sit for a couple of days so that it gets a bit more of a tang to it.

Feel free to check out the original recipe to see what I changed. I changed some of the proofing times and when ingredients were added. I also made bread rolls rather than loaves.

Also, the butcher blocks at my house are ridiculously stained with blackberries, and it was late at night when I finished the rolls so my attention to cleaning off the counter was a little lacking. I might replace the picture later, but I really wanted to get the recipe up.

Olive and Rosemary Bread Rolls

16 oz white bread flour

6 oz whole wheat flour

2 tsp yeast

2 tsp salt

2 tbsp fresh rosemary

6 oz Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped

415 ml warm water

2 tbs honey

1 tsp of olive oil for greasing

Combine water, yeast and honey in a small bowl.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours and salt together. Pour the water/yeast/honey mixture over the flour and mix it in with your hands or with the dough hook on a standard mixer until the dough comes together into a soft ball. If the dough is still sticky, add more flour.

Pour 1 tsp olive oil in a clean bowl. Turn the dough in the olive oil until it is completely covered. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough sit in a warm place for about an hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll it out to about 14x6 inches.

Cover the rectangle of dough with olive pieces and rosemary. Carefully roll the dough up into a ball and knead the dough a couple of times to work the olives and rosemary evenly into the dough.

Place the dough back into the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise for another 30 minutes in a warm place.

Take the dough out of the bowl and cut it into balls the size of your fist (you’ll get about 10 rolls out of this). Carefully shape each roll into a ball or rectangle (whichever shape your prefer), on a wooden cutting board covered in parchment. Cover them with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for another 30 minutes.

While the dough is rising, turn the oven to 430° F.

Place a large pan upside down inside the oven on the middle rack and another pan at the bottom of the oven, right side up.

Remove the plastic wrap on the rolls and make light slash marks in the center of each roll. Spray the rolls lightly with water and move them and the parchment paper on the upside-down pan.

Right before you close the oven, pour a cup of water into the pan at the bottom of the oven to create steam and quickly close the oven.

Check on the rolls after 15 minutes. Make sure there is still water in the bottom tray and spray them with a little bit more water and close the oven again. Check the rolls every 5 minutes after this until the rolls are a golden brown. They should be done after the first 5 minutes, but it may take a little longer.

Remove the rolls from the oven onto a cooling rack.

Let cool for a while (if you can) and eat!

Total Time: About 3 hours (welcome to let dough proof longer at any time in the fridge, just let it come back to room temp before baking)