Manchego Olive Freeform Bread
This loaf uses Zoe Francois and Jeff Hertzberg's Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day Master Recipe as a base, expanding on it with additional ingredients and a varied cooking time.
Recipe type: bread
Serves: 8-10
  • 1½ cups lukewarm water no warmer than 100ºF (340 grams)
  • 1½ teaspoons granulated yeast (5 grams)
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt (9 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3¼ cups all-purpose flour (455 grams)
  • 6 ounces Manchego cheeese, cut into ½" cubes
  • ½ cup Spanish stuffed olives, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon coarse sea salt
  1. In a large bowl or bucket with a loose fitting lid, mix together the water, yeast, salt, oregano, and red pepper flakes until combined. Add in the flour, stirring until all the flour is incorporated.
  2. Loosely cover the container and let it rise at room temperature until doubled in size, 2-3 hours. Once the dough has risen, it can be stored in the refrigerator with the lid still cracked on the container until ready to bake.
  3. When it's time to bake, preheat the oven to 425ºF with a baking stone in the middle rack.
  4. Lightly flour the dough and remove it from the bucket. Using your fingers, flatten it slightly and sprinkle half the cheese cubes and half the olives over the surface. Fold the dough in half and then in half again. Pinch to secure the olives and cheese inside. Shape the dough into a freeform round and place on a piece of parchment.
  5. Using the tips of our fingers, dimple the dough slightly. Sprinkle on the remaining cheese and olives and press them into the dough to secure. Brush the entire surface with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  6. Let the dough rise for 20 minutes. Once risen, slide the parchment with the dough onto the baking stone in the oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the loaf is golden brown.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before slicing.
Recipe by Life Your Way at