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Walnut and Rosemary Loaves

Yield 2 loaves, 12 servings per loaf (serving size: 1 slice)
Inside the dark crust is a creamy white bread flecked with rosemary and bits of walnuts. Not only is this bread great with soups, it's also excellent for sandwiches.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups warm 1% low-fat milk (100° to 110°)
  • 1/4 cup warm water (100° to 110°)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 packages dry yeast (about 4 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon 1% low-fat milk
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

How to Make It

  1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add yeast, stirring with a whisk; let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 2 cups flour to yeast mixture, stirring with a whisk. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 15 minutes.

  2. Add 2 1/2 cups flour, walnuts, rosemary, and 1 egg, stirring with a whisk. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes), adding enough of remaining flour, 1/4 cup at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands.

  3. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Lightly press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.)

  4. Preheat oven to 400°.

  5. Punch dough down; turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide dough in half, shaping each portion into a round. Place loaves on a baking sheet dusted with cornmeal. Cover and let rise 30 minutes or until doubled in size.

  6. Combine 1 tablespoon milk and 1 egg, stirring with a whisk; brush over loaves. Make 3 diagonal cuts 1/4-inch deep across top of each loaf using a sharp knife.

  7. Place loaves in oven; reduce oven temperature to 375°, and bake 40 minutes or until bottom of each loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Let stand 20 minutes before slicing.