Hello there, have I got a new take on Garlic Bread for you today? Oh yes I have. Homemade Breadstick Garlic Herb Dipping Oil – deeeelish!! A fab recipe to make with the kids any day, but especially this week, during half term, here in the UK. Just like at Cafe Rouge except everyone has their own pot of dipping oil!
We first had a version of these at Cafe Rouge a few years ago and we all thought they were yummy. So my mind started whirring, thinking that these couldn’t be ‘that hard’ to make at home – and guess what, they’re not!! And, dare I say, they taste better!
Usually, when I’m feeding a crowd, I double up on the recipe and two people share one plate. But last night, with our Spag Bol we each had our own bowl of Garlic and Herb Dipping Oil and Breadsticks (some of us are getting over colds – so thought individual was best!!).
Firstly to make the breadsticks, for me it really is easier to have a bread maker or stand mixer. There is no way I could do all that kneading by myself, but if you’re happy to make the dough by hand, feel free.
Recipe : Breadsticks Makes 10
1lb/450g Strong White Bread Flour
2tsp Dried Fast Acting Yeast
300ml Water – Approx 37C Body Temp
2tbsp Olive Oil
3/4 tsp Sea Salt Flakes – I used Maldon
Method : see below for hand kneading
Place the warm water into the bowl of your bread maker or stand mixer with the dough hook attached. Add the dried yeast and mix with your fingers. Place the flour on top of the water/yeast. Pour the oil on top of the flour and sprinkle over the salt.
* For bread maker set cycle to knead and prove.
* For the stand mixer, mix the ingredients for 10 minutes. When the dough is soft and elastic remove to an oiled bowl, turn once, so the sides and top are slicked in oil, cover with cling film and place in a warm place to double in size (1-2 hours).
* For hand kneading, place all the ingredients into a large bowl, as per the other methods. Bring together with your hand, in the bowl, until a complete lump of dough is formed. Place the dough on a lightly floured worktop and knead by hand until the dough is smooth and elastic – proceed as for stand mixer.
Once the dough has doubled in size knock back – gently punch down into the bowl to knock out the air (in a bread maker set to mix and allow 30 seconds of slow rotating to knock back your dough).
Tip your dough out onto a floured worktop.
Repeat the same process for the other half of the dough. Cover with a clean tea towel and leave to rise in a warm draught free place until doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 215C (200C fan).
Place the baking sheets into the hot oven and bake the breadsticks for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven.
Place the cooked breadsticks on a cooling rack to cool.
Recipe : Garlic and Herb Dipping Oil
4tbsp Virgin Olive Oil
3 Fat Garlic Bulbs
1tbsp Fresh Finely Chopped Herbs – I used Thyme and Rosemary – or 1tsp Mixed Dried Herbs
1/2 tsp Flaky Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Firstly I have to admit I didn’t actually measure the butter or olive oil when I made this!! But you are aiming for a 50:50 mix of Olive oil and butter! My laziness is your gain, as you can add more oil/butter if you want to stretch this recipe out for more servings!!! And I get called Cheeky – can’t think why?????
Anyway back to the dipping oil for the breadsticks! Put the Olive oil and butter into a small pan. Chop the herbs finely and add to the cold oil/butter.
Either mince finely, or use a garlic press to chop/squish the garlic bulbs and add to the pan. Finally add the salt and pepper – you can add less salt if you’ve used salted butter – too little salt however, will result in this dipping oil having a very bland flavour (sorry Cafe Rouge, but it’s the seasoning in your dipping oil that let’s it down!).
Place the pan over a very low heat. The idea is to melt the butter, infuse the oil/butter with the garlic and herbs and of course NOT BURN THE GARLIC!!!!
Leave the pan off the heat to sit and infuse with the Garlic and Herb flavours. Even a few minutes makes a big difference to the final oil. I made the oil whilst the Breadsticks were baking. 10 minutes before serving place the pan over a medium heat. As soon as the oil is bubbling and the Garlic is sizzling, remove from the heat and decant into individual serving bowls – I used ramekins.
Breaking into the crunchy Breadsticks and dipping into the Garlic and Herb Oil is a taste explosion in your mouth!! It’s a fun change from the usual Garlic Bread. As always these Breadsticks go amazingly well with all pasta dishes.
NOTE: The Garlic and Herb Oil can also be spooned over Ciabatta or Baguette for a more traditional style Garlic Bread.
The Breadsticks can be made smaller (this will stretch out the number of servings), just remember to reduce the baking time – I’d start checking at 15 minutes.
Any leftover breadsticks can be frozen, in a freezer bag, for up to a month.
If you do try this recipe I’d love to hear how you get on?
Have fun making these and most of all sharing them!