Italian Bread


Rosette are rose-shaped bread rolls also known as rosette so ate, which means blown or puffed up.

They take a couple of days to make, and it is the only recipe in this book where I use fresh yeast.

Such a special dish deserves the real thing and I have not been able to recreate them with instant dried yeast.

I also recommend you use a stand mixer with a dough hook for this recipe.

I made the shape of the bread using an apple cutter (available from most cooking shops).

If your rolls are not hollow inside, don’t worry too much, just remove some of the mollica (soft bread in the centre) to make space for your filling.

Makes 10

Prep. 30 minutes


  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) strong bread flour 
  • 5 g (¼ oz) fresh yeast, crumbled
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 25 ml (¾ fl oz) water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • olive oil, for brushing



Resting time: 16-18 hours

Place the strong flour, 250 ml (8½ oz/1 cup) water and fresh yeast into the bowl of a stand mixer and mix with a dough hook on low speed for 5 minutes.

The resulting dough will be quite soft but not particularly smooth.

Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside to rest in a warm spot for 16–18 hours.

Return the dough to your stand mixer, add the remaining ingredients except the olive oil and mix with a dough hook on low speed for 14 minutes.

The dough should be smooth and quite soft.

Transfer to a clean work surface and roll 80 g (2¾ oz) balls of dough with the palms of your hands, making sure each ball is smooth.

Brush the balls with olive oil, then flatten with the palm of your hand.

Using an apple cutter or similar, stamp the surface of each rosetta by cutting down to almost the base of the bread but not all the way through.

Turn the ball of dough over so that the ‘rose’ shape is on the bottom and place, well spaced, on baking trays lined with baking paper.

Cover with a damp clean tea towel and set aside in a warm place to prove for 2–3 hours.

Preheat the oven to 220°C (430°F).

Place a small heatproof glass of water on a separate baking tray and place at the back of the oven.

(The water serves to steam the outside of the bread so the crust becomes hard).

Bake the rosette for 22 minutes, until golden.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool.



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