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Fennel seed loaf

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for fennel seed loaf.

By Emma Knowles & Lisa Featherby
  • 15 mins preparation
  • 40 mins cooking plus proving, cooling
  • Serves 6
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Fennel seed loaf


  • 90 ml olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ fennel bulb, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp fennel seeds, plus extra for dusting
  • 480 gm bread flour, plus extra for dusting (3¼ cups)
  • 12 gm dried yeast (about 1½ sachets)
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • For brushing: milk


  • 1
    Heat 60ml oil in a small saucepan over medium heat, add onion and fennel, sauté until very tender (6-8 minutes), stir through fennel seeds, cook until fragrant (1 minute), remove from heat, season to taste and cool.
  • 2
    Combine flour, yeast, sugar, fennel mixture and 1½ tsp sea salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook and mix to combine. With motor running, add 250ml lukewarm water and remaining oil, knead until smooth and elastic (6-8 minutes), then transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat, cover and rest in a warm place until doubled in size (30-45 minutes).
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 180C. Knock back dough, divide in half and roll each piece on a lightly floured surface into a 35cm-long cylinder. Place on an oven tray lined with baking paper, stand until risen (15-20 minutes), brush with milk and scatter with extra flour, fennel seeds and salt. Bake until golden and cooked through (25-30 minutes), then cool completely. Store in an airtight container until required. Bread is best eaten on day of making.
  • Author: Emma Knowles & Lisa Featherby