Tuesday, April 2, 2013

TWD: Rustic Potato Loaves

Tuesdays with Dorie (a virtual cooking group) baking through Baking with Julia
by Dorie Greenspan
Contributing Baker: Leslie Mackie 


The unpretentious potato. You can purchase one at a time or in five to ten pound bags. What would you do with a ten pound bag you ask? The possibilities are endless and the humble potato does not get the recognition it deserves, except maybe at Thanksgiving.

Here are just a few uses for this wonderful vegetable:

Baked potato, mashed potatoes, potato salad, vegetable quesadillas, gnocchi, potato soup, home-fries, scalloped potatoes, potato pancakes; the list goes on and on, and don't forget the science experiment at almost every school science fair.

The potato is not only good (pure comfort food), but good for you as well. One large potato (369gr.) has only 284 calories, 0 fat, 0 cholesterol, and a whopping 7 grams of protein and 8 grams of dietary fiber. It is also a good source of vitamin B6, potassium and vitamin C (source: nutritiondata). I'll pop one into the microwave for a quick lunch and enjoy it with a sprinkling of salt and pepper.

Then there are the wild unproven medicinal claims, from drinking potato juice for stomach ailments to raw potato placed on the skin to alleviate inflammation (source: livestrong). Do not try any herbal remedies without consulting your doctor first!

Then there is this wonderful bread. It only takes about three hours from start to finish; a lot less time than most yeasted breads. The book even says this is a good one for making on a whim. (For me a whim is something I can whip up on a moments notice, say like buttermilk biscuits. I can throw them together and into the oven while the soup is simmering away on the stove).

The recipe makes two loaves; I decided to make one loaf to be used for sandwiches later, and turn the rest of the dough into rolls to go with our soup that evening. The rolls were perfect - soft, warm, and delicious, especially with a little butter spread upon them.

Success meter (1-3): 3

You start by boiling cubed potatoes (skin and all!) till just tender. I read other bakers peeled their potatoes. I'm one that eats the skin and all of a baked potato, so why not in the bread as well (as instructed) and I liked the speckled look the peel gave the dough.

Then air dry for about thirty minutes.

So much for obtaining a football shape (it's a very lean football).

I had some fun decorating a few of the rolls. As for the loaf, not so rustic looking as it should - I forgot to turn it seem side up before placing it into the oven.

Just look at the softness of this bread (as well as bits of peel).

I can see myself adding all kinds of goodness to the dough in the future: a little asiago, cheddar, Parmesan, scallions, chives, rosemary, maybe even some nuts or seeds - again the possibilities are endless.

Visit Dawn's blog, Simply Sweet for the recipe, and don't just stop at her awesome bread post - check out her amazing cakes she makes - they're incredible.

I'm sure there will be all kinds of versions of this bread from the many talented bakers we have in the group. To see their results check out the TWD LYL: Potato Bread link.

The recipe can also be found on page 138 in the book Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan.


  1. Your bread looks beautiful!!!! I love the lovely decorations on your rolls, very nice!!!
    I enjoy this recipe, probably my favorite, easy and very tasty, definitely a keeper!!!

  2. Your rolls are just plain gorgeous!!! Beautifully done!

  3. that it some delicious looking bread. Well done!

  4. Cathleen, your bread looks delicious! Great idea to make rolls too! I love your photo of the inside of the bread - scrumptious!

  5. Thanks for the ode to the humble potato. French fries and chips give the spud a bad name. It's really a great vegetable and can be very nutritious when not drowned in butter, oil or sour cream. (not that I have anything against butter, oil or sour cream!)

  6. Love your prickly-top potato rolls, Cathleen! Great idea! And many thanks for the sweet comment and shout-out about my blog. :)

  7. Great looking bread. Love the look of your rolls. It really is a good recipe. I can't wait to make it again. I love what Dawn did with hers. (I am going to try that next time)

    1. I'm going to try Dawn's version as well!

  8. Love all of your suggestions for using the humble potato - and great looking bread too.

  9. Everything looks great - and some great ideas about potato use. Now, I am hungry :-)

  10. What a great idea to make rolls out of some of the dough. They look beautiful. It is amazing how many good things you can make with potatoes, but ai haven!t heard about the potato drink before.

  11. Thanks for all of the info and the defense of the lowly potato! Your loaf and rolls look great!

  12. Cathleen, just love the way all your small and (large) potato loaves look like, I really do enjoy their unique shapes quite a bit. It is so nice that all of the bakers who had a chance to make this fabulous bread really enjoyed it! And I agree, it is a great, must-repeat recipe.
    Have a wonderful Wednesday!
    P.S.: Sorry, I was a little absent during the last few days - but we had a few glitches with our computer/stove and other assorted hardware at home...I will take the time and look at all your other lovely blog posts a bit later today!

  13. Love how you turned the recipe into potato rolls. Great idea. Great post.

  14. The rolls are so pretty! I am looking forward to experimenting with flavours in this recipe, too.

  15. I love the idea of making rolls, they look amazing. I also love your idea for add ins! Asiago sounds divine, might be my next addition.

  16. Oh, I wish I had thought to make some rolls from this lovely dough. The bread was great, I can imagine how good the rolls would be.

  17. Your rolls look wonderful! I think I'll give that a try.

  18. Looks great! Rolls are a wonderful idea.

  19. Love, love love the roll idea. Will do that next!

  20. Many thanks for the interesting infos about potatoes. Life would be sad without them!
    I love your rolls, especially the one with "peaks": it looks like my boy's hair when he get up in the morning ;-)
    I loved this bread soo much. I did not make it with all purpose only but mixed whole wheat and ground flax seeds and made 4 varieties:
    Nuts & Pecan, Sunflower, Sourdough,and no seeds or nuts.


Thanks for visiting! Would love to hear from you - feel free to comment.