A quick and easy bread loaded with Kalamata olives and oregano
If you’ve ever been to Greece, or visited a Greek home (or been raised in one!), you know that there are times when meals are very simple affairs. Especially in Greece, where there is the afternoon siesta, lunch is often the largest meal of the day with dinner being a lighter affair. It is not unusual to sit at a table and be offered bread, olives, tomato wedges, feta and maybe some nuts and be told that supper is served.
This bread would be welcome at that Greek dinner table. In fact, it would be welcome anywhere. Loaded with Kalamata olives and flavoured with amazing Greek oregano, this is a bread that you’ll find yourself making again and again.
This is not the first olive bread that we have posted. You may remember our no-knead bread with olives and feta. That no-knead bread is simply amazing, with a firm, crispy crust and a crumb that is loaded with feta and olives. So good!! And so easy! But, no-knead breads need a lot of down time, so although they are super easy to make, if you crave bread today – you can have it tomorrow. Sometimes, that’s just not acceptable.
Fortunately, this easy Greek olive and oregano bread only needs a few hours between craving and eating. Most of this is inactive time when you allow the dough to rise. This gives you the opportunity to think of what you would like to serve your bread with! The options are pretty endless, but good choices could be green beans and potato stew, Greek village salad or roast chicken with lemon potatoes.
Your recipe indicates using a hand held mixer or a stand mixer. What if I don’t have either?
You can certainly do the mixing and the kneading by hand. The mixer is not essential, it just makes the job easier. If you don’t have a mixer, don’t despair. Make the bread anyways – it’s still easy, and it will still be delicious.
It seems unusual to dump all the ingredients together in the bowl! Will this really work?
Yes, it does seem unusual, but trust us…it works! We actually adapted this recipe, and technique from Linda over at The Wanderlust Kitchen and we’ve used it to also make our part whole wheat flour bread with honey. This is really an amazing way to make bread, and you can find Linda’s recipe which inspired this one by clicking here.
Is there an easy way to pit olives?
There sure is. Most olives, including Kalamata olives, have a slit on one side of them. We find that if we use the flat side of a chef knife blade to press down on the olive, the slit gets larger and we can then pretty easily pry the pit out.
Are you looking for more recipes that include Kalamata olives? We don’t blame you! How about these:
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Easy Greek olive and oregano bread
- Stand mixer (or a hand held mixer)
- Baking tray
- Parchment paper
- 1 1/2 tsp dry instant yeast
- 1 cup (250 mL) lukewarm water
- 2 3/4 cups (410 grams) all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp olive oil, plus more for greasing bowl
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
- In the mixing bowl of your stand mixer combine the yeast, water, flour, salt, olive oil and the oregano. With a rubber spatula mix the ingredients and let sit for 15 minutes.
- Next, gently fold into your dough the chopped Kalamata olives. Using the bread hook of your mixer, mix on low-medium speed for 5 minutes. If you find the dough sticking to the side of your bowl, sprinkle in some additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Transfer your dough to a well greased bowl. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and place your bowl in a warm place for 60-70 minutes.
- After this first rising, punch the dough down and shape your bread loaf. Place the dough on a parchment lined baking sheet, and let rise, loosely covered, for an additional hour, in a warm place. For help on how to shape the bread, watch this video.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- Lightly sprinkle the top of the loaf with a little bit of flour and lightly score the bread 3 times, as shown on picture above, with a serrated knife. You can also use a blade if you happen to have one.
- Bake in the middle rack of your oven for 30 minutes
- Allow to cool fully on a wire rack, before slicing.