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Sage and Olive Bread

January 24, 2011

Photo by Gerik

Several years ago, my sister, Sharon and her daughters took me to one of their favorite places in the Seattle area.  The original Herbfarm near Fall City ( was everything a herb farm should be, beautiful gardens in all their glory, arbors, garden art and a perfect place to hold a cooking school where they demonstrated how to use everything fresh from their gardens.

The most memorable part of their class that day was  a delicious fresh Sage and Kalamata Olive Bread.  I’ve tasted Rosemary and Olive bread but this one with sage took me by surprise.  One other thing that intrigued me was the use of white whole wheat flour.  That was something new to me and to the public that year and the class was completed with each of us clutching an address where we could order the flour if we couldn’t locate it in our local grocery stores.  Eventually I was able to find a co-op store that carried it.  Now the flour is available in about every store in town.

I have purchased this bread off and on over the years at local bakeries but I find such satisfaction in baking my own that once in a while I’ll pull out the recipe just so I can fill the house with its glorious fragrance.  My favorite fresh herb butter awaits the first warm slice as it comes from the oven.  Who cares I haven’t thought of the rest of today’s dinner menu, to me it’s all about the bread!

Herbfarm’s Fresh Sage and Olive Bread

Photo by Gerik

1 T. dry yeast
2 c water, 115 degrees
3 – 3 ½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
½ c white whole wheat flour
1 ½ tsp salt
pinch of sugar
1 cup Kalamata Olives, pitted and halved
2 T fresh sage, destemed and chopped

Combine yeast and ½ cup white whole wheat flour and 1 cup unbleached flour, add pinch of sugar.  Stir well to blend and add water.  Beat well to combine, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour or longer.  Can be held overnight.

Stir down well and add:
Mix well 1 cup unbleached lour and salt and add to yeast mix.

Add 1 cup olive halves.  Add remaining flour ½ cup or so at a time until soft dough is ready for kneading.  Knead 8-10 minutes using only 1 T flour at a time to prevent sticking.  This should be a very soft dough.  Place in large bowl or plastic container, cover and let rise to double.  Flatten gently and divide into 1 loaf or 2 smaller loaves.  Flour well the tops and bottoms.  Place on parchment lined sheet and let rest for 20 minutes or so.  Score tops.

Bake 30-35 minutes in a 400 degree oven.  When baking time is up turn the oven off and keep the door closed. Leave bread in for another 8-10 minutes.  Cool bread at least 1 or 2 hours before slicing.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Chelle Parmele permalink*
    January 24, 2011 5:01 pm

    Love this bread. One of my favorites for summer fresh veggie sandwiches. Thick slices of cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce and fresh mozzarella cheese.


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