Insalata Caprese Loaf


Baking for the letter ‘I’ left me pretty confused. The almost obvious choice was the Irish Soda Bread which has also been on my to-bake list for quite a while. But at the same time, I had decided on the bread theme for this month and the soda bread is technically not bread since it uses baking soda and not yeast. Further research on Google also told me that it is treated as cake in Ireland even though it is called bread and treated as such in the rest of the world.

Like always, the solution presented itself when I was trying to solve another problem. I have been eating more salads now to compensate for all this bread baking and eating. When I was figuring out a tomato salad, I came across this one called Insalata Caprese which means ‘Salad of Capri’. I figured I could put this delicious salad into a loaf and ta da! So, that is what I did. The significance of Insalata Caprese is that it depicts the colours of the Italian flag which is white, red and green. It is a simple salad with fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil leaves sprinkled with salt and pepper. I had seen fresh mozzarella at the newly opened gourmet store near home and promptly bought it.

I was a little apprehensive about the cheese melting and flowing out of the bread but that did not happen. Only a small amount of cheese oozed out but not much fell on the pan and all was well. So when you braid this bread, ensure you do not leave gaps between the strips because that can lead to the cheese oozing out.

Country – Italy

Makes a 10″ loaf

Recipe for the dough from ‘Easy Sourdough Recipes’


All purpose flour                        1 1/2 cup

Sourdough, unfed                       1/2 cup

Warm water                                 6 tbsp

Instant yeast                                 1 tsp

Salt                                                  1 tsp

Olive oil                                         1 tbsp

Fresh mozzarella cheese           120 gms

Tomato, large                               1

Basil leaves                                   3-4

Salt & Pepper


  • Mix the flour, sourdough starter, yeast, salt and olive oil with the water
  • Knead to form a smooth dough, around 7-8 minutes by hand
  • Keep covered in a greased bowl till it doubles in size, about an hour
  • Punch it down and keep covered again to rise again for an hour
  • Cut the tomato and mozzarella into 3-4 slices each
  • Roll out the dough into a rectangle of around 8*6″
  • Leave a gap of an inch and place the mozzarella and tomato slices alternatingly in the centre of the rectangle
  • Tuck in the basil leaves between the mozzarella and tomato and sprinkle the salt and pepper
  • With a knife or dough scrapper, cut finger wide strip on either side of the fillings
  • Fold in the top of the dough and then fold in the strips alternating between the two sides
  • Tuck in the dough at the bottom of the loaf
  • Set aside for 15-20 minutes

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  • Preheat the dough at 220C
  • Reduce the temperature to 200C and bake for 20-25 minutes till the top is nicely brown
  • Remove from the oven and let cool
  • Serve warm
  • Enjoy!


This is my post for the Mega Marathon under the letter ‘I’.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 75

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