Bread with dinner is like a ritual to me. Ever since I got into baking and realized how delicious bread can be, I don’t go a day at home without having bread with my dinner. Unless you go to a bakery, the breads you normally see at the store are often times nothing special. But the possibilities with yeast breads are actually endless. In my opinion, a truly good bread doesn’t need butter or anything else spread on it; it has flavor all by itself.
Since it’s zucchini season and we have a TON of zucchini at my house, I decided that if I can make a sweet quick bread with zucchini, why I can’t a make a savory yeast bread? So I gave it a go, and sure enough, it turned out fantastic. Zucchini is great for adding moisture to bread and giving it a nice texture. I added some other tasty ingredients to really make the flavor explode. As it turned out, this bread was a real hit with the whole family (even my sister, the picky eater!)
One unique thing to note about this bread is that it has kashk in it, which is a thick, off-white colored liquid used in Persian cooking. According to what I’ve read, it’s made from whey. It has a taste that really can’t be described. All I know is that it’s delicious. If you have a Persian grocery store near you, I would recommend buying some. It tastes phenomenal with cooked eggplant. However, if you can’t get your hands on any, I would suggest using yogurt in place of the kashk.
Savory Zucchini Bread
(makes 1 loaf)
1/4 cup kashk
3/8 cup whey (liquid from the top of plain yogurt)
generous 1/2 cup water
1 1/3 cups grated zucchini
4 1/2 cups white bread flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons dried dill
5 slices of dried shallot (about 1 teaspoon)
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened (1/2 stick)
1 1/2 teaspoons rapid-rise yeast
1/4 cup crumbled feta
Oven Temperature: 350 F
Note: This recipe uses a bread machine, so it’s actually really easy to make. If your machine instructs you to add the dry ingredients before the liquids, reverse the order describe below.
1. Add the kashk, whey, and water into the bread machine pan. Add the grated zucchini on top.
2. Sprinkle the flour over the liquid ingredients, making sure the flour covers them completely. Add the dill and dried shallot. In separate corners of the bread machine pan, add the salt, sugar, and softened butter. Make a small well in the center of the flour and add the yeast.
3. Set your bread machine to the mix-bread setting. This setting will make the machine beep right before the last kneading period so you can add the feta without it getting completely melted into the bread. As the machine begins to knead, watch the dough to ensure that it doesn’t look too sticky or not sticky enough. Add more flour or water as necessary. Once the bread machine beeps, add the crumbled feta.
4. Remove the bread from the machine as soon as it has finished baking so the edges don’t get burnt. Remove from the pan and allow to cool.