One of the oldest foods in the world is bread. Whether it is flatbread or leavened bread, this mandatory staple food is enjoyed across the globe at every table. The term “Breaking Bread” signals the start of a meal in many cultures and shows just how important bread is culturally to humans.
To break bread, the people present must physically interact with each other thus starting the opportunity for bonding and friendship. Bread is a tasty morsel that can be shared with the people you love or the new friends you meet and have brought to the table. When bread is combined with another of history’s oldest foods in the world, cannabis, it creates a combination that will elevate any dinner table, especially during the holidays.
This delicious food dates back 30,000 years ago and has been a part of every culture in various forms. The first breads were flat and were made of ground flour and water. Prehistoric people would grind the flour against stone then mix it with water to create a simple dough. This dough was then baked on heated rocks. Examples of this bread still surviving today is the Indian “Nann”, Mexican “Tortillas”, Scottish “Oatcakes”, Norwegian “Flattbrod”, and Middle Eastern “Pitas” to just name a few. This style of bread was eaten at meals, shared during religious celebrations, and used during traveling.
Leavened bread on the other hand, introduces the use of yeast spores which creates a risen, soft, and airy loaf. The reason why the bread becomes soft and airy is due to the yeast spores making their homestead in the flour and water. When yeast lands in this mixture whether intentionally or not, the yeast eats the sugars present in the flour then excretes C02 which produces bubbles. These bubbles then create that familiar texture in bread we know today.
Yeast occurs everywhere naturally in the air, so even flatbread dough when left out to rest, will naturally start to rise. With this being said, it is quite possible that early bakers accidently left out flatbread dough only to find it raised later and thus leavened bread as we know it came to be. The Egyptians are credited with baking the first leavened breads with yeast around 300 B.C. They used a mixture of water and Emmer wheat to make their breads. Emmer wheat as well as bread has been found in many Egyptian tombs.
As civilizations progressed, so did the cultivation of grains and the baking of bread. Because humans were able to start cultivating grains, they no longer had to be nomadic and the shift from foragers to farmers began. This lead to the formation of towns, refined flours, new methods and recipes for preparing bread including starters, creation of outdoor and indoor ovens, structural changes of meals, artisan bread and bakeries, and the rise of white bread as a few examples. Bread and civilization evolved alongside together, inspiring one another through history.
Sophisticated artisan bread, is a style of bread that has lasted through history since its creation by inspired hands. To be considered such, this style of bread must meet specific standards and guidelines. These qualities dictate that the bread must be: handmade, use culture starters such as yeast, have no additives or preservatives to extend the shelf life of the bread, and must use traditional production methods.
Making artisan bread is a labor of love and an art form that needs to be preserved through tradition. Nothing is more satisfying then taking a life form, nurturing it temporarily, watching it transform during the sponge (yeast, water, flour, and sugar) and proofing (rising the dough) processes, and then sacrificing that life for the consumption of a delicious nutritious edible. And as fancy as that all sounds, while making artisan bread may take some time, it is relatively easy and very much gratifying to ones soul.
This particular recipe of Artisan bread calls for the use of the cannabis strain “Cough”, which is also known as “Fort Collins Cough” or “Colorado Cough”. This strain is the child of Northern Lights #5 and Haze. At 80% Sativa and 20% Indica, she is perfect to indulge in at any meal time. Make sure to dose yourself with the proper amount of medication and then hold off as she is a creeper that is known to hit you hard. She produces a heady uplifting sensation that will ease any bout of depression. And as time progresses, her Indica qualities will begin to ease away inflammation, pain, and reduce ocular pressure in the eyes.
The earthy flavor mixed with hints of sweetness and spice will marry well with the herbal flavor profiles in this bread creating a delicious experience. Enjoy at the table during the holidays to break bread with family, friends, and loved ones. Or simply enjoy the luxury of artisan bread at home by yourself when your body craves an ancient nutritious treat.
Mise en place for the Cough Olive Oil:
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 7 grams of ground Cough
- 1 double boiler (2 pans that stack within each other, the bottom one filled with water)
- Wooden spoon
- Fine mesh strainer
- Small glass bowl
- 1 cooking thermometer
- Place the double boiler on the stove (fill bottom large pan with water and float the slightly smaller pan on top of the water). Add the olive oil then the ground Cough to the pan. Bring the water to a boil then drop down to a slightly above a slow boil (about a 6 on a stove though stoves vary).
- Stir this mixture with a wooden spoon to make sure all the cannabis is fully saturated with the oil. Let this mixture infuse for 1 hour. While the fat is infusing, periodically stick the cooking thermometer in the water without touching the bottom of the pan. For fats, the ideal temperature is 220F.
- After the hour is up, strain your mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a glass bowl. You now have 8 tablespoons or 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil to cook to enjoy. Reserve the plant material if you wish to make capsules as a natural fiber supplement.
There is 20% THC in the strain Cough. So, 20% of 1,000mg (1 gram dry bud weight) would be 200mg. Since you have 7 grams, then you will have 1,400mg total in the extra virgin olive oil. It looks something like this: 20% thc with 7 grams = 1,400mg (200mg x 7)
Since there are 8 tablespoons in ½ cup, it will be 175mg per tablespoon. If you were going to divide it into teaspoons, there are 3 teaspoons in a tablespoon therefore each teaspoon will be 58.3 mg.
Mise en place for bread:
- 1 ½ cups Hungarian Stone Ground Whole Wheat Flour
- ½ cup Hungarian All- Purpose Flour with extra to knead dough in
- 1 cup warm water
- 3 tablespoons dried rosemary
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 4 teaspoons dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 2 teaspoons dried garlic
- 2 teaspoons dried onion
- 1 teaspoon sea salt plus extra for seasoning
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon basil
- White corn meal to dust bread
- Cracked black pepper mill
- Olive Oil Spray
- 6-8 black olives
Directions for spices:
- Divide spices into two small separate bowls.
- Spices for inside of the bread: 2 tsp thyme, 2 tsp onion, 2 tsp garlic, 1 tsp basil, 1 tsp oregano, and 1 tbsp garlic.
- Spices for the top of the bread: 2 tsp rosemary, 2 tsp thyme, olives sliced in halves, salt and pepper. (You can cut the rosemary and thyme in half if you wish)
Directions for bread:
- In a small bowl add 1 cup of warm water. Now add in the brown sugar and yeast. Let this mixture stand for 5 minutes. Then add in the dried herbs for the inside of the bread. Gently push the herbs into the water with the back of a spoon. Now let this mixture stand for 10 more minutes.
- When the 10 minutes are up add this mixture to a kitchen aid mixer bowl. Add in the olive oil, salt, whole wheat flour, and AP flour. Turn on the kitchen aid mixer on low with a dough hook for 3 minutes until it forms sticky dough. Through this process be sure to scrape the sides of the mixer (If you do not have a kitchen aid mixer do not fret as you can do this in a large bowl by hand with a wooden spoon).
- Flour your counter top with extra AP flour. Gently scrape your dough out of the bowl with a spatula onto the floured surface. Sprinkle a little flour on top of the dough. Knead the dough for 6 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.
- Spray a large bowl with the olive oil. Gently add the kneaded dough to the bowl. Cover with a clean cotton kitchen towel.
- Turn your oven onto “Warm/Hold”. Place the covered bowl on top of the stove in the center. Let the dough rise for 1 hour.
- When the hour is up, gently punch down the dough. Spray the top of the dough with a little olive oil spray.
- Shape the dough into a loaf style of your choice. You can decide to make the bread loaf flatter or higher. Spread some white corn meal on the counter top and place the dough on top of it. Using both hands, spin the dough so that the corn meal gets stuck to the bottom. Spray the dough a little bit more with the olive oil (not too much). Sprinkle the second set of spice across the top of the dough. Crack black pepper on top and sprinkle sea salt.
- Spray the pizza stone with the olive oil. Carefully transfer the dough to the center of the pizza stone.
- Cut the black olives in half. Spread on top of the dough.
- Place the pizza stone back on top of the oven and loosely cover it again with the cotton towel. Let it rise for 1 more hour.
- After the hour is done, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 25 minutes. The bread should be slightly browned and hollow sounding when tapped.
- Pull from the oven when the 25 minutes is up.
- Now decide if you are going to brush on the medicated olive oil or if you are going to be making a dipping sauce.
- Ways to medicate the bread:
- Brush on 1 tablespoon of olive oil onto the whole bread for 175 mg. If you want more, increase by tablespoons. For example, if you brush on 3 tablespoons then the bread loaf will contain 525mg. Do this while the bread is hot and serve it right away.
- If you do not want to brush the olive oil on the bread then you can use the oil for dipping sauce. You can divide the oil among dinner guests in individual glass bowls to dip the bread in. Or serve it out individually with balsamic vinegar. If you do not want to serve a whole tablespoon, then divide it into teaspoons. There are 3 teaspoons in one tablespoon, so each teaspoon will be 58.3 mg. Do what is most comfortable for you. Be creative and enjoy!