Makes 32 Breadsticks
These extra-long rustic Italian breadsticks are fun to make and last for several days with our dry climate keeping them extra crispy. Make a batch when you’re having friends over and they can help with the stretching and be there to enjoy them hot out of the oven.
A Quick Note on Yeast: The two most common types of yeast at the grocery are active dry yeast and rapid rise/instant yeast. As you probably found out during the early days of COVID-19, yeast was hard to come by, which is when I started buying yeast in bulk. Through some trial and error, I learned that the bulk yeast I purchased at the Co-op was instant yeast and I could use it interchangeably for active dry yeast but it does not require proofing. You add it directly to the dry ingredients. Also, due to its smaller particle size, you need slightly less, such that 2 teaspoons equal the standard “1 envelope” yeast measurements (1 envelope = ¼ ounce = 2¼ teaspoons). I am writing this recipe using the active dry yeast sold in the 3-envelope strips for ease, but if you have instant yeast, just use 2 teaspoons and ignore the proofing step.
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup lukewarm water
1 envelope active dry yeast (¼ ounce or
7 grams; 2¼ teaspoons)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1½ teaspoons kosher salt or sea salt
2 cups Wheat Montana all-purpose flour
1 cup Conservation Grains Wheatsome flour blend (or other whole-wheat flour or all-purpose)
¾ cup semolina flour
Additional olive oil, a couple teaspoons
Optional: flaky salt or a salt with dried herbs
Mix honey into the lukewarm water and sprinkle with the yeast. Stir to combine and let proof for 5 minutes. Using an electric mixer with paddle attachment, add the proofed yeast and water, olive oil, butter, and salt and mix briefly. Add the flours and mix to combine. If the dough appears dry, add additional water a tablespoon at a time until the dough comes together. Change out paddle for a dough hook and knead on medium speed for 5 minutes (or knead by hand on a lightly floured surface).
Transfer dough to a solid work surface and shape into a 14-by-6-inch rectangle. Drizzle dough with a teaspoon or 2 of additional olive oil and, using your hand, smooth it over the entire surface, optionally sprinkle with flaky salt, then cover with a piece of plastic wrap. Let rise about 1 hour, until puffed.
Preheat oven to 425°F about halfway through the rise time. Line 2 (12-by-18- inch) sheet pans with parchment or drizzle with olive oil. Using a pizza wheel, cut the dough across the 6-inch way into 32 pieces—to make quick work of this, I make my first cut in the middle, then keep cutting each half in half, again and again, until you get down to 16 little strips per half. Pick up each strip and stretch and twist it to fit the length of your sheet pan (about 18 inches), then place it on the pan, positioning them as close as possible without touching. You should be able to get 16 on each pan. Bake until just beginning to turn golden, about 15–20 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Enjoy!
- Adapted from the PBS show “In Julia’s Kitchen with Master Chefs: Grissini with Carol Field,” by Carol Field and Julia Child.