A ricotta loaf is slightly sweet and gorgeously moist. Slice up and slather with chocolate spread, berries, honey or whatever takes your fancy.
- 7 g sachet dried instant yeast
- 200 ml lukewarm milk
- 500 g (3⅓ cups) “00” flour
- 1 tbsp caster sugar or honey
- 120 g firm ricotta
- 50 ml extra virgin olive oil
- 1 scant tbsp salt
- 1 tbsp milk
- 1 egg
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Standing time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Cooling time: 1 hour
1. Combine the yeast and lukewarm milk in a jug and mix well. Place the yeast mixture, flour, sugar (or honey), ricotta and olive oil in a bowl and mix to combine. Add the salt, then turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes or until smooth. The dough should be soft but not sticky so add extra water or flour as needed. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover and stand at room temperature for 1½ hours or until doubled in size.
2. Turn out the dough onto a work surface and stretch into a rough rectangle, then roll up into a log. Place the log, seam-side down in a baking paper-lined loaf tin. Cover and stand at room temperature for 45 minutes or until risen by two-thirds.
3. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
4. Lightly beat the milk and egg together, then brush over the top of the dough. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown on top and cooked though. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool for 1 hour before slicing and serving with your favourite toppings.
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