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Twisted Savory Pesto Bread

Twisted Savory Pesto Bread
This savory swirl bread is made with Gesine Prado’s Simple White Bread Dough. It’s the perfect side to your favorite Italian dish, or serve as an appetizer on Game Day or at your next gathering.
Yield 1 loaf




  • 2 cups (454g) lukewarm water (100°F)
  • 2 tablespoons (25g) extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons (12g) fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon (10g) granulated sugar
  • 5 cups (600g) bread flour
  • 1 (0.25oz) package (7g) or 2 1/4 teaspoons Platinum Yeast


  • 2 cups (50g) basil, packed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup (50g) finely grated Parmesan
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons (18 to 27g) olive oil

Egg Wash

  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 large (50g) egg


  • In a large mixing bowl, add the water, olive oil, salt and sugar.
  • Add the flour to separate bowl and then the yeast. Stir/whisk to combine. Add to the water mixture.
  • Using a wooden spoon or a Danish dough whisk, stir until most of the flour is absorbed into the dough. Turn the dough over with your hands in the bowl a few times to work in the rest of the flour. The dough will look very shaggy.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Set aside a small bowl of flour (‘bench flour’) to use during kneading as needed.
  • Knead the dough by gently flattening the dough into a rough 8×11-inch rectangle. Grab the top half and fold over, folding the dough in half. Use your palm to push dough forward, "sealing" the dough at the fold seam. Turn the dough 90 degrees and fold, seal and turn again. Knead for 10-12 minutes, or until the dough is shiny and smooth and stays put when shaped into a taut ball. Another way to test if the dough is kneaded enough is to poke it with your index finger, and if the dough springs back it is ready. (See notes for stand mixer directions.)
  • Place the dough into an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to double in size in a warm place, about an hour.
  • Prepare pesto: In a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until smooth. (Note: you can also use store-bought pesto.)
  • Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a 12×20-inch rectangle. Spread the pesto evenly onto the dough. Starting at a longer side, roll the dough tightly, pinching edges to seal seam. Place seam side down and, using a sharp serrated knife, cut the dough in half lengthwise. Twist the dough pieces, keeping the cut sides up and carefully transfer to a parchment-lined sheet pan. Shape the dough into an “S.” Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to proof until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Make the egg wash: whisk water and egg together. Brush the dough with egg wash and bake for 45 – 50 minutes or until golden brown and the internal temperature of the bread reads about 200ºF.
  • Cool loaf on wire rack.


Stand mixer directions:
  1. Add water, olive oil, salt, and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.
  2. Add the flour and yeast.
  3. Mix on medium-low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, is shiny, and a small piece of dough, stretched thin, does not tear, about 7 to 10 minutes. Continue with step 6.
Recipe was developed using King Arthur bread flour. Adjustments in the amount of flour and kneading/rise times may be needed if using other flour brands.
Recipe by Gesine Prado.

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Twisted Savory Pesto Bread

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