Inspired by the fig-filled breads of Italy, this simple prune bread studded with diced prunes complements everything from jam to olive oil and cheeses. The dough is sticky, so keep plenty of fine semolina flour on hand for dusting.
Yield: two 340g [12 oz] loaves
4 g / 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
330 g / scant 1 1/2 cups warm water
15 g / 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
425 g / 3 1/4 cups bread flour
24 g / 1/4 cup semolina flour, plus extra for dusting
12 g / 1 heaping tablespoon kosher salt
200 g / 2 cups Diced Dried Plums
In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water. Add the olive oil.
In a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the bread and semolina flours. Add the yeast mixture and mix on low speed until a dough forms, about 1 minute. Let rest for 20 minutes.
Add the salt and mix on medium speed until the dough is smooth and pulls cleanly away from the sides of the bowl, about 5 minutes. Add the prunes and mix on low speed until evenly distributed in the dough, about 2 minutes. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and let it rise at room temperature until doubled in volume, about 1 1/2 hours.
Dust a work surface with a thick layer of semolina (use a generous handful). Turn the dough out onto the surface and cut in half. For each half, place the cut sides of the dough facing down. Cup both hands around the dough and rotate clockwise, tucking the edges under with the sides of your palm until the dough forms into a ball. Dust the dough with more semolina flour and cover with a kitchen towel. Let the dough rest until the rounds have nearly doubled and lightly spring back to the touch, about 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 500F [260C].
Uncover the dough. Using a sharp paring knife, dock the loaves with one long cut about 12 mm [1/2 in] deep down the center. Using a floured baking peel, slide the loaves onto the baking stone. Lower the oven to 400F [200C] and bake until the crust takes on a deep golden color and the bottom sounds hollow when thumped, about 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.