I get inappropriately excited when a restaurant bread basket includes some addictive, thin, crunchy, savory grissini (breadsticks). I've been known to spoil my appetite happily nibbling on the thin spindles. The natural next step was to figure out how to make them for myself.
Here, I've adapted the plain lavash cracker dough recipe from "The Bread Baker's Apprentice." I eliminated the honey, increased the hydration ratio to 59 percent, added rosemary and replaced a third of the bread flour with rye flour. I also use a food processor for the dough, as I don't have a KitchenAid mixer. You could of course do the kneading by hand or in a KitchenAid if you have one. Just make sure to chop the rosemary by hand and to adjust the mixing/kneading time appropriately. —Oops! Were you gonna eat that?
light rye flour
salt (about .195 oz)
instant yeast (about .0825 oz)
rosemary leaves (about .1 oz). Make sure to chop if kneading by hand or in a stand mixer
olive oil (about .75 oz)
room temperature water
1 to 1.5 tablespoons
olive oil, for brushing
Coarse sea salt
In This Recipe
In the bowl of a food processor, add the flours, salt, yeast and rosemary leaves. Pulse for about 20 seconds to combine and break up the rosemary leaves a bit.
(Note: before doubling this recipe, make sure your food processor is large enough to accomodate the resulting amount of dough)
In a large measuring cup, combine the olive oil and water. Turn the food processor on and stream the oil water mixture in. In approximately 30 seconds the dough will come together as a ball. Let the processor run for a minute after that (1 and a half minutes total).
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it a few times by hand. Place the dough ball in a lightly oiled bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, approximately 90 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Once the dough has doubled in size, cut the ball in half. Cover and chill the half you are not working with. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into the shape of a rectangle (or as close as you can get to a rectangle). Using a chef's knife, cut the rectangle crosswise (not lengthwise) into 15 strips of dough. You want to be able to cut 15 uniformly wide and uniformly thick strips.
Take each strip and roll it between your hands until it forms a "rope" that is the entire length of your baking sheet. Place the "ropes" onto the baking sheets.
Brush each "rope" with olive oil and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Bake for 28-30 minutes, rotating and switching the pans halfway through. You want the grissini to be lightly browned.
Repeat with the second half of dough.
These are great served alone, for dunking in soup or with white bean dip.