Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Sunflower and Parsley Pesto Bread Twists

Sunflower and Parsley Pesto Bread Twists the name sounded like a tongue twister to me. After whipping up these delectable bread twists I was left to ponder what exactly to call them. I tossed around a few ideas: Seven Seagulls Sunbathing on the Seashore Swigging Sangria? (Nah, but it is catchy.) Seven Serpents Slithering Sideways Sun Tanning with Santa Claus? (Hmm, no, but that's a visual.)

Fine I'll go with the obvious. I have to confess though I'm still stuck on the idea of sun tanning with Santa Claus, especially if Sangria is involved.

As I've been flitting around the blog-o-sphere this week, I've noted a discerning trend of "I've hit the creative wall". I have to confess to hitting that same wall many of times. After I've hit it enough times as to induce swelling it occurs to me that it's time to change gears. Usually I have to walk away completely and immerse myself in something else and if it was meant to be, I'll come back to it. Or sometimes I just need to chuck all that crazy talk in my head and go make something.

Sunflower and Parsley Pesto Bread Twists 
Bread Dough
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water, 110 degrees
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup spelt flour
1 tablespoon olive oil

1 clove garlic
1/2 cup roasted salted sunflower seeds
3/4 of a bunch of flat leafed Italian parsley (leaves only)
Salt and pepper
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Also needed
1/2 cup finely grated Fontina cheese
1/2 tablespoon melted butter
Coarse salt

Add yeast and water to a large bowl or bowl of a mixer and let sit for 5 minutes. Add the salt, all-purpose flour, spelt flour, and olive oil and mix with a dough hook or by hand until combined. Once dough has formed a ball, place it on a floured cutting board and knead a lit bit until dough is smooth. Place dough ball into an oiled bowl, cover and let rise one hour.

If you don't have the spelt you can sub all-purpose flour, but it did add an extra nuttiness to the dough.

Add garlic, sunflower seeds, parsley, salt and pepper to the bowl of a food processor and pulse. Stream in olive oil and keep pulsing until mixture is nicely chopped.

Place the dough onto a floured board and roll into a rectangle about 12-inches by 8-inches. Spread the pesto over the dough leaving about 1/2-inch around the edges. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the pesto. Cut the edges off to square up the dough and cut dough into 1 1/2 to 2-inch strips. I got seven out of my dough.

Place the strips on a baking sheet lined with a silpat, parchment or buttered. Hold both ends and twist each stick turning it over on itself a couple of times till reaching the center and repeat. Brush tops of sticks with melted butter and sprinkle with a little coarse salt.

Bake in 350 degree F oven for 25-30 minutes until nicely browned.

Can you smell them?

I've been busy this week preparing for a Valentine's Craft Party for the kids I'm having soon. I'll show you some of the prepping really soon. Rest assured though, their shall be glittering and bedazzling.




  1. Your pesto sounds incredible, Gina! Love these twists!

  2. I am addicted to pesto. Love it so much! I realised I am lacking of something in my blog. Breads :). I seriously need to bake more breads and I know my niece will definitely enjoy this twisties. ♥ Jo

  3. Gina,
    Your bread twists looks, so good, especially with the pesto, how creative. You haven't hit the wall:)

    Enjoy your Valentine Craft party!

  4. Love the idea of the pesto twists, so clever. Looks like you are going to have loads of fun with the valentine craft party.

  5. I don't think you have to worry about hitting any walls,lol!!!
    I like your pesto filled cheesy bread twists- I'm wanting one of these with soup or a salad or something good;-)
    The Valentine crafting sounds like fun too, no calories involved-that's a good thing for me right now!!!
    Have a great week and GO NINERS!!!

  6. Trust me if you did the wall you broke it down fast :)
    These look sensational!

    Choc Chip Uru

  7. Can't decide whether I like pesto bread twists or bedazzling more. Needless to say, I hope you're serving these at your next bedazzling party :)

  8. Gorgeous bread twists, Gina. You know that I love homemade bread, and this is definitely one of the must-bake!

  9. I love these, can I come to the valentine party..I may need some pointers :)

  10. Haha Gina I too like the idea of sun tanning with Santa (a really hot one;)) and of course Sangria is a must. Your twists look awesome. We get some cheese twist from our bakery that are made with buttery-flaky pastry dough. I need to make yours with the pastry dough I've in the freezer. Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to your V-day post.

  11. MMM...I am drooling again over your dishes! This looks absolutely and positively delicious! Must try!!! Have a lovelyyy weekend...well two more days!!!:D

  12. I don't care what you call these, they look darn good! Bedazzling, even. ;-) I kinda like the Seven Serpents name, but I guess what you eventually went with is much more descriptive. Well, accurate, at any rate. Good recipe - thanks.

  13. I can eat ten of those for dinner and call it a day. Love all the flavors especially the pesto. I'd happily go sunning with Santa and Sangria!

  14. lovely recipes..
    never even though about pesto on bread instead of pasta.
    thx for such inspiration

  15. if there is sangria involved, I'll sun bathe right along side ya! haha....i practically CAN smell it from here....I should be eating a bit less bread right now as I'm in the whole disciplinary excercisy thang right now...but, seriously, who could resist this???

  16. I love pesto in bread. Nice flavor combo. This looks amazing!

  17. I LOVE this recipe Gina! Anything with pesto is always tasty. It reminds me of the pesto bread sticks you can get at Mary's Pizza Shack. Now I can make them at home - thanks to you! :)

  18. Yes I think I can smell them :) These are wonderful!!!

  19. sunbathing with Santa while eating these delicious pesto bread twists :))
    I'm addicted to bread and your pesto twist sound so good I wouldn't ask for anything else for dinner!