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Herb Bread with Biga

in quick and easy whole grain dairy free gluten free overnight guaranteed classic

Author: Brinna Sands? updated by Susan Reid

Herb Bread with Biga Recipe

An overnight starter (the biga) gives this bread great depth of flavor. The bread is tender and packed with herbs and onion. It makes excellent toasted sandwiches or savory filled panini.

At a glance

1 loaf
Nutrition information


Choose your measure:



  • all of the biga
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup Baker's Special Dry Milk or 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon instant or active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs of your choice (rosemary, chives, thyme, dill)
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion


  1. For the biga: In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients, cover, and let sit on the counter for 8 to 12 hours.
  2. For the dough: In a large mixing bowl, combine the biga with the remaining dough ingredients except for the onion. Mix until the dough comes together, then knead for 6 to 8 minutes, until the dough smooths out and becomes elastic. Knead in the onions. If using a bread machine, remove the dough at the end of the kneading cycle.
  3. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise for 45 minutes. Remove the dough the dough from the bowl, deflate it and fold it in thirds. Turn it over, and place back in the bowl. Let rise for another 45 minutes.
  4. After the rise, deflate the dough and shape it into a pan loaf, or a boule.
  5. For a pan loaf, place in a greased 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" pan. For a boule, place in a bowl lined with a floured tea towel.
  6. Let the dough rise until it's 1" above the rim of the loaf pan, or has almost doubled in size.
  7. While the bread rises, preheat the oven to 350°F for pan loaves, or 425°F with a pizza stone in it for a boule.
  8. When the loaf has risen, slash the top and bake the pan loaf for 35 to 40 minutes, or turn the boule out onto the stone and slash the top. Bake for the boule for 35 minutes, until the center reads 200°F when measured with a digital thermometer.
  9. Remove from the oven and let it cool on a rack before slicing.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 49g (1 slice)
  • Servings Per Batch 16
Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 89
  • Calories from Fat 9
  • Total Fat 1g
  • Saturated Fat 0g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Cholesterol 0mg
  • Sodium 165mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 19g
  • Dietary Fiber 1g
  • Sugars 1g
  • Protein 3g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.