Artisan Italian Hoagie Rolls

 

 

 

 

I enjoy eating and making great breads. I love to kneed dough by hand, shaping and tweaking the process for an even better result for the next time around.  Kneading dough is kind of therapeutic.  For instance, the hand work, texture, pulling/pounding of the dough are functions that help relieve stress. Waiting for the dough to slow rise and be ready is almost like waiting to open a gift. Baking bread is kind of art and science working together and it keeps me intrigued.  I favor a crispy, crunchy exterior and a light, airy and fluffy interior.  These Artisan Italian Hoagie Rolls have the above qualities.  Try this recipe and most importantly, have fun making breads.

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Artisan Italian Hoagie Rolls
This easy Artisan Italian Hoagie Rolls recipe is easy to make and takes few ingredients. Use a good thick pizza stone to bake bread on. If you do not have a stone, a preheated upside down baking sheet can be a substitute. This recipe makes a total of 8 small loaves or 4 large rolls. I often make 4 small loaves and freeze the remaining dough for another time.
Servings
small Loaves
Servings
small Loaves
Instructions
Kneeding and Folding
  1. Place 1/2 cup of the warm water in small bowl, add brown sugar and yeast. Allow yeast to become active for about 15 minutes. In a large bowl add flour, salt, yeast mixture and remaining water. Work the ingredients together with a wooden spoon. Now incorporate the extra virgin olive oil into the dough.
  2. Lightly flour a flat surface. Remove dough from the bowl and place on flat surface (I use my kitchen counter). Lightly flour hands and sprinkle a little flour on top of the dough and start the kneading process. Roll the dough in a diagonal pattern, from side to side. Stretch the dough and fold in into itself. One can find hand kneading instructions online. Knead dough for about 15 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl and place dough inside. Spray nonstick cooking spray onto plastic wrap and place over top of the dough. Allow to slow rise in the refrigerator.
  3. About every 6 hours, fold the risen dough into itself (see attached picture). Place plastic wrap on top and refrigerate for 6 more hours and repeat. One needs to repeat the above process 3 times. Allow the dough to rise into a ball after the 3rd folding.
Shaping Dough
  1. Remove dough from bowl onto a floured flat surface. Separate dough into two half. Slowly and carefully roll each dough into a log shape. Cut into 4 equal pieces, ass seen in picture. This will make 8 small loaves. As mentioned early one can create a giant dough log and create 4 large loaves. Another one is to freeze half of the dough for later use.
  2. Lightly dust a clean kitchen towel with cornmeal. Take each dough piece and roll out to 8-9 inch pieces and lay out onto the towel. Fold towel over (as seen in picture) and add the next. Allow enough room on sides so the dough can expand. Cover the towel loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise for about 2 hours.
Oven Setup
  1. Add pizza stone to the bottom rack of the oven. Add a bowl of hot water in a baking safe bowl till about 3/4 full. Place the bowl a few slots above the stone. Preheat the oven for 1 hour at 425 degrees.
Baking The Bread
  1. Make a few slits on the top of each loaf with a razor blaze for a professional look. Slowly and carefully transfer bread to parchment paper and use a pizza peel to place bread on top of stone. Allow to bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 385 and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until bread is golden brown. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Recipe Notes

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