Pesto Bread

I have now lost the original recipe for this, but that is okay. It called for a lengthy process that included stuffing the bread with a fresh pesto sauce. We all know now that I do not have the patience for stuff like that, so I throw it all in one bowl & let it be easy! This would be the perfect accompaniment to the Tuscan Bean Soup, but I know my parents ate the whole loaf hot from the oven & slathered with butter!

5 cups all-purpose flour (or half wheat & half regular)
2 1/2 t active dry or bread machine yeast
2 T sugar
2 t salt
2 c hot tap water
3 T olive oil
2 T dried basil or 1/4 c fresh chopped basil
1/3 c Parmesan cheese, grated
1 clove garlic
  1. Turn on oven light.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with a flat beater, mix half of the flour with the yeast, sugar, & salt.
  3. Add the water, olive oil, basil, cheese, & garlic.
  4. Mix, adding more flour 1/4 cup at a time, until the dough forms a shaggy mass.
  5. Remove flat beater & attach dough hook.
  6. Knead dough with dough hook about 8 minutes, adding remaining flour when dough becomes sticky (this dough will remain sticky).
  7. Cover mixer bowl & place in oven until dough doubles in bulk (about 20 minutes).
  8. Punch dough down, divide in half, shape into loaves, & place in greased loaf pans.
  9. Cover pans & place in oven to rise until dough reaches toe top of the pan (20 to 40 minutes).
  10. Remove covering from pans & heat oven to 375○.
  11. Bake loaves 40 to 50 minutes.
  12. Let cool in pans about 10 minutes.