Artisan green olive sourdough bread is airy and chewy, has a signature crispy crust, and is loaded with pitted green olives giving it a tangy kick and Mediterranean flair. It takes just 15 minutes of actual work and no kneading. Meaning that all the time required for this recipe is just waiting around for the dough to rise.
Ingredients in Green Olive Sourdough Bread
- sourdough starter - you can make your own sourdough starter with a combination of flour and water. It takes about 7 days to create a mature starter.
- flour - combination of all-purpose flour + whole wheat flour
- green olives - I used ½ cup, but you can use more or less, as desired.
How to Make Small Batch Green Olive Sourdough Bread
The steps in making a green olive sourdough bread is pretty much identical to that of regular sourdough. The only difference is that you incorporate some olives when you are stretching and folding the dough.
- Prepare the starter. If your sourdough starter if not ready to go, and is stored in the fridge, take it out and feed it 12 hours in advance. Let it rise for 6 hours or until doubled in size. Do a float test to check if it is ready.
- Prepare the dough. In a large mixing bowl, add sourdough starter, all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, and water, and whisk to combine. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest for one hour. Add salt and fold into the dough for a few seconds to combine.
- Stretch and fold the dough. Apply some water on your hands and stretch and fold the dough in the bowl by folding the edges over to the centre, one edge at a time. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 30 minutes. Then, fold in the olives and repeat the stretch and fold step, followed by a 30-minute rest, two more times. After the final rest, the dough should almost double in size.
- Shape the dough. Transfer dough to a floured surface and sprinkle dough with a little flour. Shape the dough into a tight ball by folding the edges over to the centre. Turn the dough over and use a bench scraper to push the dough back and forth to create a tight ball. Place the dough into a medium bowl lined with a floured dishcloth. Cover and let the dough rest at room temperature for 3 to 3.5 hours (or in the refrigerator overnight for 8 to 12 hrs).
- Score the dough. Remove dough from bowl and place upside down into the centre of a 9x9-inch piece of parchment paper. Use a razor blade to score the dough. Place dough back into the bowl and cover until oven is preheated.
- Bake the sourdough bread. Place a small oven-safe cooking pot (6x6-inches) with a metal lid into the oven and preheat to 450° F. Gently place dough with parchment paper into the pot. Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Then, remove lid and continue to bake for another 20 minutes. Remove bread from the pot, and allow it to cool completely for 1 hour.
FAQ and Tips for Making the Best Green Olive Sourdough
- How do I make sourdough starter? It takes about 7 days to create a mature starter out of flour and water. Learn how in my sourdough starter guide which includes the top frequently asked questions.
- Always use a fully mature sourdough starter to ensure that your bread rises. A lively and mature sourdough smells yeasty and a little fruity. Check that your starter is ready by dropping a teaspoon of starter in a cup of water and see if it floats (the float test).
- Pat-dry the olives so that you don't introduce water to the dough and change its water hydration content.
- Can I let the dough rise at room temperature instead of overnight in the fridge? Absolutely. The dough will rise much faster at room temperature. Depending on the conditions, it should rise in about 3 hours. You can check if it's ready with a poke test: simply poke the dough with your finger. If it springs back up right away, then it's not ready. If it springs back up slowly, then the dough is ready. No spring back at all means that the dough is over proofed.
- Do not over proof the dough. Over proofing breaks down gluten in dough and makes dough sticky and slack. The dough will not rise, but instead will be flat, and will taste more sour. You can prevent this by letting the dough rise at cooler temperature (such as in the refrigerator overnight).
- Can I make a double batch? Absolutely. You can double the recipe and bake in a bigger pot or dutch oven. Or, you can double the recipe into two separate batches and make two loaves.
How to Serve Olive Bread
Olive bread is so good just on it's own, dipped in a mixture of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I also love to spread some creamy homemade hummus on top or some cream cheese. So so good. You can also use it for your next grilled cheese sandwich or panini.
More Sourdough Recipes
- Small Batch Sourdough Bread
- How to Make Sourdough Starter
- Savoury Chive Pancakes with Sourdough Starter
- Sourdough Cinnamon Roll Twist Bread
- Seeded Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread
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