By Chef Nathan Yaple
This is bread I like to make at home when I can go outside and pull fresh beets right out of the ground. It has a beautiful golden crumb flecked with bright red, and is delicious with a tangy goat cheese or thick yogurt.
Yield: 1–2 loaves
3¼ cups bread flour or all-purpose flour
1¼ cups whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons instant yeast
2 teaspoons salt
1½ cups water, 95°F
2¼ cups grated raw beets, small or medium, scrub skin, trim top and bottom
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl, stir together the flours, yeast and salt.
Pour the water into the bowl of a stand mixer; add the beets, butter and then the dry ingredients. Use the dough hook attachment and mix on low speed for about a minute, until the ingredients come together in a shaggy mass.
Mix the dough on medium speed for 3–5 minutes, until it forms a smooth but sticky ball in the center of the bowl.
Place the dough into a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rise until doubled in size, about 1 to 1½ hours in a warm, draft-free place.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently fold it like a business letter. Allow it to rest, covered with plastic from bowl or dish towel, for about 10 minutes.
Shape the dough into round or torpedo loaf or loaves and place on a lightly floured baking sheet, or into 2 lightly oiled loaf pans. Cover and allow to proof until doubled in size, about 45 minutes. The bread is ready to bake when an indentation made by pressing a moistened finger lightly into the dough does not spring back.
Slash the dough with a very sharp knife or blade, if desired. Bake for 45 minutes, or until browned and hollow sounding when thumped underneath. Cool on a wire rack.
Edible Berkshires is a local, independently owned publication dedicated to covering the unique culinary culture of Western Massachusetts.