Garlic & Herb Flowerpot Bread
It's easy and fun to make bread in clay flowerpots. This delicious flowerpot bread is made with garlic and herbs and goes wonderfully with soup.
Makes: 2 medium loaves or 8 mini loaves
Ingredients
  • 450 g (16 oz) bread flour
  • 270 g (9½ fl oz) lukewarm water
  • 50 g (2 oz) melted butter or vegetable oil
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1½ tsp dried yeast
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 beaten egg for glazing
  • Fennel seeds (optional)
Instructions
  1. Add the yeast to the water, mix well and leave for 10 minutes.
  2. Mix the flour and salt in a bowl and make a well in the centre.
  3. Add the yeast/water, melted butter, crushed garlic and herbs. Mix to a slightly sticky dough.
  4. Knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  5. Place the dough in a lightly-oiled bowl, cover and put in a warm place to allow the dough to about double in size.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a surface and knock back to expel the gas.
  7. Gather the dough together and divide into two. Depending on the sizes of loaves you are making you can further divide each half into four.
  8. Shape the dough pieces and place in your flowerpots which you have greased with either butter or margarine.
  9. Cover and leave in a warm place to allow the dough to rise and just poke above the tops of the pots.
  10. Brush the tops with beaten egg and sprinkle with fennel seeds.
  11. Bake at 180°C/360°F fan oven, 200°C/400°F conventional oven. The larger loaves will take about 35 minutes and the mini loaves will take 15-20 minutes.
  12. Allow to cool before removing from their flowerpots, or serve the mini loaves in flowerpots. Your dinner guests will be amazed!
Notes
For a medium loaf use a 14 cm (5½") pot, and for a mini loaf use an 8cm (3") pot.

The pots need to be seasoned the first time you use them to prevent them drawing all the water from your rising dough. Wash them in soapy water and allow to dry. Rub the pots inside and out with plenty of vegetable oil and bake at 180-200°C (360-400°F) for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Oil and bake at least two more times to properly season the pots.

Always use new clay pots and not ones that have already been used for plants. To save energy it's a good idea to bake the pots when the oven is being used to bake something else - a cake or a casserole, for example.

You can make just about any kind of bread in flowerpots. Slice them either from top to bottom to get a conventional shape or slice across to get circular slices of bread, then fight over who gets the top!