Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Duck Prosciutto Bread
In my experimentation with the duck prosciutto, I think this is my favorite thus far. Back in the day (that's about eight years ago) I used to live in NYC, Brooklyn to be exact, and I used to get some really exemplary prosciutto bread. Maybe it was Joe's Busy Corner in Williamsburg, or perhaps it was Caputo's in Carroll Gardens, I really don't remember. But it was chewy bread, with a good crust, studded with prosciutto and cracked black pepper. (You know things are good when they're studded!) Meaty, spicy, salty and chewy bread. That's what makes a girl happy. So, when seeing the duck prosciutto in the fridge the other day, it dawned upon me that I could make prosciutto bread. I can get nice prosciutto, but if I'm laying out the cash for it, I'm having it sliced in see-through slips with nothing else (sounds dirty, doesn't it?). But the duck prosciutto? It's perfect for cubing and stuffing it into dough.
For bread, I usually use the guidelines for the basic dough in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I make it and leave it in the fridge in a large food-grade plastic container, and when I'm ready I can throw together a quick loaf of bread. In this case, today's bread began with a look out the window to see more snow pouring down ceaselessly. An ice storm is due tomorrow. If this meaty bread doesn't cure my winter time ennui, I don't know what will. Maybe those three boxes of wine I have down in the basement. Yes, boxes. Don't knock it!
One loaf I rolled out and sprinkled cubes of prosciutto over it, adding fresh ground black pepper. Then I rolled it back up and pinched the ends. The other one was more focaccia-style. The rolled one steamed the meat, and made the inside all nice and duck-fatty. The focaccia one made the duck get all crispy crackly on the top. I really think the best way to approach would be to start with a new batch of bread, so that when incorporating the flour, you can add the prosciutto, so that the meat and dough cling to each other. But this is certainly not a bad place to start.