The Bread Baker's Apprentice Challenge #38: Tuscan Bread
Making this saltless bread was not the real challenge, but looking for ways to enjoy the bread or the reasons to justify its existence was. I actually liked its natural sweet flavor but after eating 2 slices plain, I was craving for something savory to eat it with. According to Peter this bread should be eaten with rich flavorful meats and soups.
After rubbing the slices with garlic, I drizzled some olive oil, then topped it with spicy Portuguese sardines, strips of roasted sweet pepper, capers, flaked sea salt, and a few drops of sriracha sauce. It was delicious, but then the same toppings tasted way better on salted bread. Sorry but Tuscan bread just can't win. The wonderful texture and ease of preparation aren't good enough reasons to make this again.
One important thing I learned from baking Tuscan bread: now I know what bread to avoid if ever I visit Tuscany. I just saw an episode of Food Trip With Todd English on PBS where he was in an open market in Tuscany. He was offered a slice of Tuscan bread but was also told that very few people buy them because they're tasteless. The seller offered him another type of rustic bread to try. So, why do they still bake their bread without salt when it seems it is not very popular even in Tuscany? Just asking.;-)
egg salad and inexpensive lumpfish caviarspicy Portuguese sardines, roasted sweet red pepper, capers, hot sauce
visual appeal 4
ease of preparation 5