Cheese and olive rye bread sticks
The process for the cheese and olive bread sticks is similar to making regular bread dough, I started with a rye biga, don’t skip this part. In a short proofing dough, it’s essential to add depth and the rye biga is a great flavor booster, you will see that the bread is not flat, it has layers of complexed aromas in it when using a pre-fermented dough.
The final dough is 50% white all-purpose flour and 50% rye flour (the biga) so the bread sticks feel airy and light, even though they are packed with cheese and olives.
Don’t expect this dough to increase its volume by a lot it’s a heavy dough and the cheese does not make it easier for it to rise, I would say it will rise about 30% its original volume, nevertheless its light in texture.
This recipe yields between 12-16 breadsticks, depends on the size you roll them, if making more than 16 sticks you will need to adjust baking time and reduce it by a few minutes to avoid dry and stiff breadsticks.
Baking time is fairly fast, about 22 minutes per baking pan of 6-8 sticks, don’t get fooled with the golden color of the bread sticks, the egg wash will make it appear darker than it really is, so be patient and wait the full amount of time.
Like any bread, this is no different and we also use steam in order to generate a nice crust around the cheese and olive bread sticks, the inner sticks will be nice and tender and the exterior will be crunchy, just like we love to eat our daily bread.
For a Vegan version of this recipe just remove the cheese from the breadsticks, you can replace it with any variation that comes to your mind, dried tomatoes, thyme, pecans, walnuts etc.
So, get yourself your favorite dip, I like olive tapenade or dried tomato paste (or just a simple olive oil) and serve these bread sticks as a great appetizer to any meal because you can’t really have enough of these breadsticks, so they actually build a great appetite for the main course.
Cover with a plastic wrap and place in room temperature for 12-16 hours.
10 minutes before end of the proofing time, rub the breadsticks with the egg wash. throw in the bottom of the oven a few ice cubes and insert the baking pan into the oven, bake for about 17-20 minutes and set aside for 10 minutes to cool before serving.