Bread plays an essential role in the Greeks’ daily diet. It’s always present on our table, either being lunchtime or dinnertime. There are different types of bread made in the country, depending on the area, what type of flour is used and if yeast or leftover dough is used as a leavening agent.
Sometimes other ingredients are added to the dough, like olives, peppers or herbs. Olive bread is very popular here in Greece. It’s called “eliópsomo” and it is usually served with appetizers or salads. But it’s so tasty that it can be enjoyed on its own!
Here’s the recipe:
200 ml warm water
2 teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons esti olive oil
3 cups all purpose flour (may need more)
180 gr pitted and chopped esti Kalamata olives
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.
In a large bowl, mix flour, salt, and olive oil. Add water-yeast mixture and knead until the dough is smooth and doesn’t stick to hands – it will take some time. The more you knead, the better dough you will get.
Form the dough into a large loaf and place it on a floured pan in a warm place, cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise for at least an hour.
Knead again the dough, add the olives, and continue kneading until the olives are distributed throughout the dough.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
Form the dough into loaf shape. Score the top of the loaf, place on a floured baking pan in a warm place, lightly covered, and allow to rise for about ½ hour.
Bake for about 35-4 minutes until golden brown on top -The loaf should sound hollow when it is tapped on the bottom. Stand on a tray for 5-10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.