Happy Monday everyone!
I hope everyone had a grand Thanksgiving!
We had a lovely one. My parents and younger siblings came up for the day and it was incredibly fun. Even though they only live forty-five minutes from here, we rarely get to all hang out for an extended time, so I was very glad of that. We feasted, played games, and tried to get a very very very very very very stupid bottle of rice whip to work for Natalia since everyone else was having whipped cream.
Thankfully though, while that was balmy, everything else was delicious and the day was fun. I think in a few more years I will really get the hang of making a gluten, mostly dairy (we served a few things the dairy free eaters could not have), egg, ett. free Thanksgiving feast.
After cooking for a few days leading up to Thanksgiving, I was ready to make something that was completely and utterly not a Thanksgiving dish! No sweet potatoes, turkey, pretend corn bread, or cranberries allowed. I thought about making some Peanut Butter Jelly Rolls, a recipe I have been working on here and there for about a month. But, I knew I was going to need to make a few sweets over the weekend for freelance work and here, so wanted something savory.
I racked my brain…and remembered something I had made a few years ago, savory tomato bread. Caramelized tomato paste with herbs and garlic rolled into bread dough and baked to swirly deliciousness. I haven’t even tried it again since going gluten free, but since I am working on a bread for sweet rolls I decided to give it another shot. While I have not figured out a good gluten free roll or sandwich bread, I have found that flat breads and filled breads are a little easier to make delicious.
I had just bought 24 little glass jars of citric acid free tomato paste, and so set to work!
It is fun to see how my cooking has changed over the years. When I first made this I used just rosemary, garlic, and thyme but I am getting more adventurous with my flavors and so I added in some anise, fennel, and nutmeg this time. Three ingredients you will often find in Italian sausage.
Caramelized tomato paste with Italian sausage flavors meant the taste really reminded me of pizza.
It reminded me enough of pizza enough I decided I should make some sort of creamy sauce and top with fresh herbs. I thought about making a vegan cheese sauce to be dairy free, but ended up chickening out. While I have made a parmesan sub I mostly shy from making faux dairy and cheese products. I prefer to try and focus on what we can have as I think we enjoy our food more then.
In the end, I decided to go for a garlic aioli. It was simple and worked to add some creaminess (and perhaps more importantly it helped to hold the herbs on). If you can do dairy, I would suggest using an alfredo or cream cheese sauce or melted cheese, but I found the garlic creaminess perfect even if I would have preferred a slightly less mustard-y flavor than the soy-free vegan mayo I used.
My family was pretty excited to have such a fun bread! Mark loves filled bread, but I rarely take the time to make them as I usually am so busy doing the practical needs of feeding my family that fun things like this just don’t happen. But, they were so well received I will have to take the time to make them again!
Please note: I have used affiliate links in my recipe.
- For the bread:
- 1½ cup brown rice flour (not sweet, I used freshly ground on the finest setting)
- ⅓ cup tapioca starch
- 1 T pysillium husk
- ⅓ cup ground flax seed
- 1 cup + 1 Tablespoon hot water (I used as hot as my tap can go)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon honey OR 4 teaspoons sugar
- 2¼ teaspoons fast acting yeast (see notes)
- 4 T F.O.C. (fat of choice. I used organic palm shortening)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Oat or all purpose flour for rolling
- F.O.C (fat of choice) for topping the rolls before baking
- For the filling:
- 7 oz glass jar tomato paste OR 6 oz can + 1 Tablespoon water
- 3 T F.O.C (fat of choice, I ghee/tallow/lard/organic palm shortening/refined olive oil)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground rosemary
- ¼ teaspoon ground thyme
- 1 pinch ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon whole fennel
- ½ teaspoon whole annise
- For the topping:
- Juice ½ small lemon
- ¼ cup mayo (I used a soy-free vegan version but homemade would also work)
- 1 clove of garlic
- Chopped parsley and basil chiffonade (cut right before using)
- Mix together the rice flour, tapioca starch, flax seed, and pysillium husk. Stir in the hot water. It will be soupy at first and start to thicken as you stir it in. If the dough is hot let cool off till just warm (I have never had this happen). Stir in the oil, yeast, salt, sugar or honey, and fat of choice which is melted if need be. Combine everything well. Put in an oiled bowl and very lightly oil the top to keep from drying out. Let sit in a warm spot for 30 minutes. I used my box style dehydrator set at 90 degrees.
- While that is raising you can make the tomato filling, put everything for the filling in a small pot. Heat until the water in the paste or added water starts bubbling, cook and stir for 3 minutes until it smells quite strong. Set aside.
- After the dough has finished raising, preheat the oven to 450 degrees and grease a pie pan. Shift the baking powder over the raised dough, and knead in.
- Roll the dough on a floured surface until ½" thick rectangle. I did not measure it but I think it was about 12" by 18". (I rolled on oat flour as rice flour would be a bit gritty). Spread on the tomato paste, leaving a 1" rim around the edge to less mess when rolling. Roll up into a log starting from the long edge. Cut into 1" pieces using a piece of butcher string or floss (see photos for an example).
- Put the tomato rolls into the prepared pie pan. Brush the rolls with a little bit of fat of choice and sprinkle with a little extra annise and fennel if desired. Let rise for 30 minutes in a warm spot (I used the dehydrator again as our house is cold) while the oven preheats. Once the thirty minutes is up or the rolls are nearly doubled bake for 25-30 minutes. Until the center rolls are done.
- If using aoili simply stir the ingredients together. If dairy is not an issue I would sub about ¼-1/3 cup alfredo sauce. While the rolls are still warm, but not piping hot spread that on and sprinkle on the herbs. These are best served warm- room temperature.
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