The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Silverton's Olive Bread

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Silverton's Olive Bread

I've been making this bread since the book was published. It's a straight sourdough, made with a 100% starter at about 65% hydration, with a pretty thorough mechanical mix, a four hour bulk fermentation at about 78 degrees, and proofed overnight in the fridge. This results in a loaf with a fairly even, but discernible, crumb, which I like because it holds the olives in place. I use twice as many olives as called for, and I still don't think that's enough. I use Kalamata, oil cured and large Sicilian green olives. The oil cured olives stain the crumb around themselves purple. There is also some wheat germ. 

These were combo cooked (550 degrees for 15 minutes, then about 25 minutes uncovered at 460 convection) with some interesting results. First, I seem to get most of my spring after uncovering, unlike, for example, baking under a stainless bowl, or baking with the towel setup. Still, the spring was considerable. Second, the crust is quite thin and crispy, which is not a bad thing, but it is worth knowing to expect this result. 

The scoring, my own contribution, is meant to evoke olive leaves.

This bread has a moist crumb because of the olives. I was in a rush to see the interior and taste it, so the crumb is a little raggy on the first slices. The 2 pound loaves are almost exactly 4 inches high.


SylviaH's picture

Interesting you did not get oven spring until removing the lid.  Do you pre-heat your top and bottom combo cooker?  550 seems nice and hot..I put my cc in the oven and turn it on to 500F when it beeps, signaling the oven has reached 500F I add my loaf and cover for 20min.  I've been happy with all bakes, so far.

ADDED:  Do you let your loaves warm up after coming from the frig?  I just let the chill off, about a half hour and then bake.


louie brown's picture
louie brown

It's really a delicious bread.

I didn't preheat the cc and I did let the loaves out for about 90 minutes. It certainly seems well worthwhile to try your suggestions. Thanks again.

MichaelH's picture

I too have tried this bread, although not for a while. I need to try it again. I don't think Silverton gets as much attention as she deserves on this forum, she has some great recipes and techniques.

My attempts at this bread have not turned out as nice as yours, but I'll keep trying.


Mebake's picture

Great looking Bread, Louie!

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Don't forget the extra olives, Michael!

ehanner's picture

Louie, that's one very nice pair of breads. I don't have any of Silverton's books. Would you be so kind to post the formula and method you used for this? I'd like to try it in the cc.


Franko's picture

Great loaves Louie! Beautiful crumb and crust, but I particularly like the way you've scored them. It's shows a delicate, precise touch with the knife. Very eye catching!


breadsong's picture

Hi there louie, I agree with Franko, the scoring is just beautiful. Leaves were the first thing I thought of when I saw your lovely breads. Thank you for sharing your pictures! from breadsong