- 1 packet of yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 1/2 cups warm milk
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tbsp olive oil (and another 1/2 tbsp for brushing)
- 1 tsp salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
- 2 tbsp of lemon juice
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups of rye flour
- coarse salt for sprinkling on top of bread
- 1/2 tsp of dry basil for sprinkling
- 1/4 tsp lemon zest
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- In a medium sized bowl mix the yeast, sugar, and warm water.
- Set aside for 5 minutes or until foamy. If it doesn’t foam that means the yeast is dead and you need to start over
- Whisk the milk, honey, salt, olive oil, and baking soda together and add it to the yeast mixture.
- Add fresh basil and lemon juice and mix
- Add 3 cups of all purpose flour (1 cup at a time) and mix until smooth. Use a mixer for this if you can
- Add the rye flour, one cup at a time, keeping mixer on low speed.
- Once the dough pulls from the sides of the bowl take it out it from the bowl and place on a lightly floured surface. Knead a little bit
- Place in bowl, cover with towel or plastic wrap and leave it alone and let it rise for 1.5 hour
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- At this point you can just put the dough in baking dish lined with parchment paper (this will make it easier to take out). Or you can braid it by splitting the dough into 3 pieces.
- Brush the tops of the loaves with olive oil and sprinkle coarse salt, then dry basil, lemon zest and then garlic
- Bake for 12 minutes. Take out and spray with some water. This will crisp the tops a bit. Bake another 13 minutes.
- Remove loaf from oven
- Allow to cool in pans for 10 minutes
**Notes: If you want a crisper crust, brush the bread with egg instead of olive oil. You could also use melted butter instead of olive oil. I think my favorite is to brush with egg before baking and butter after baking***
***If you dont have rye flour, you can just use all purpose flour for the whole thing***