Tomato Basil Bread

Tomato Basil Bread
Let’s talk bread.

Specifically, let’s talk about homemade bread. About this homemade delicious Tomato Basil bread that is super easy to make, even for those short on time (Baby Boy likes to keep us busy), or those not confident in their bread baking abilities.

Let’s talk about the type of bread that you can just throw together in between naps (baby’s, or your own if you prefer) and still have come out looking and tasting amazing.

Tomato Basil Bread
I’ve always wanted to bake bread, and to be a good bread baker. When I was in college I picked up an advanced bread baking book. It went over in painstaking detail every facet of baking bread, from the types of yeasts and flour to the various baking methods. Being young and naive, I bypassed most of that dry stuff (little bread humor for you) and focused squarely on what I thought was the coolest part of the book; building a brick oven!

Tomato Basil Bread
I wanted to build my own brick oven so I could bake the most delicious bread and pizza you could possibly imagine. Never mind that I was not in the least handy with tools (I’ve since acquired that skill, funny what owning an old home forces you to learn), or for that matter was not an experienced bread baker who could truly utilize a brick oven. In fact, I had never once made bread before.

And yet I wanted to build a brick oven. Who knows what was going through my head (probably images of delicious looking bread), but I enthusiastically started on my oven.  I got as far as digging a 10 foot by 10 foot hole about a foot deep- in my parents’ backyard. Then I graduated college and left for Japan for a year (Have fun with that hole in your backyard, Mom and Dad!).

What good parents, not killing me.

Tomato Basil Bread
I never did build that brick oven. But I found out that you don’t need one to get delicious bread. And while I’ve had more than my fair share of failures, I’m inspired to keep going. I recently purchased some King Arthur Sourdough Starter after reading a number of delicious sourdough recipes on Sydney’s blog, Crepes of Wrath, that inspired me. I made my first test loaf over the weekend, and am looking forward to sharing many recipes.

But before we get into that, I wanted to kick things off with a simple recipe. And this Tomato Basil Bread is just that. Honestly, this recipe is very forgiving. There isn’t much more to it than throwing all the ingredients in your stand mixer and allowing for two risings before baking. No fancy techniques. No special starters or flours.

Oh, and no brick oven required.

Tomato Basil Bread
PS – We’re very excited to (pre)announce our very first give away. We’ll be sharing all the details in tomorrow’s post, so be sure to swing by!

Cook Time: 35 minutes


  • 1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm water (110 to 115 degrees )
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, minced (may be substituted with 2 tablespoons dried basil)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 1/2-2 3/4 cups bread flour


  1. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Stir in basil, Parmesan cheese, tomato paste, sugar, oil, salt, pepper flakes, and 2 cups flour. Stir in enough of the remaining flour to form a stiff dough.
  2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 3-5 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top of the dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until dough has doubled, about 1 hour.
  3. Punch dough down; knead for 1 minute. Shape into a round loaf. Place on a greased baking sheet (or pizza stone). Cover and let rise again until doubled, about 1 hour.
  4. With a sharp knife, cut a large "X" in the top of the loaf. Bake at 375° for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet to a wire rack to cool.
  5. Cooking time: 35 minute(s)

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Tomato Basil Bread

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