Pumpkin Seed Pesto Bread

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Le Creuset

Recipe by Le Creuset

Serves 6-8

Difficalty: Average

Cook Time:

Under 1 Hour



400ml hand - hot water

1½ teaspoons golden caster sugar

1 tablespoon active dried yeast

325g strong white bread flour

175g stoneground wholemeal bread flour

1½ teaspoons fine sea salt

3 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds - coarsely chopped (optional)


25g shelled pumpkin seeds

40g fresh coriander leaves

½ medium-hot green chilli - seeded and finely chopped

1 large garlic clove - crushed

5 tablespoons olive oil

25g Parmesan cheese - finely grated


  • 01

    Place 150ml of the hand-hot water into a cup, whisk in the sugar and the dried yeast with a fork, and leave somewhere warm for about 5 - 10 minutes until covered in a thick layer of froth.

  • 02

    Meanwhile, sift the white flour, wholemeal flour and salt into a bowl and stir in any bran left in the sieve.

  • 03

    Add the yeast mixture and the remaining hand-hot water and stir together until well mixed, then knead for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Cover and leave in a warm place to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

  • 04

    For the pumpkin seed pesto, put the pumpkin seeds, coriander, chilli, garlic and oil into a food processor and blend to a paste. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and some salt to taste.

  • 05

    Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, knock out the excess air, and knead once more until smooth. Divide into two equally sized pieces. Roll each piece out into a 25 x 15cm rectangle. Spread half of the pesto over each piece of dough, leaving a 1cm edge. Starting with one longer edge, tightly roll up each piece of the dough, pinching the edges together as you go, then pinch the final seam closed. Using a large sharp knife, cut each roll lengthways in half, and then twist the two pieces together again, keeping the pesto seam uppermost. Lay the twists side-by-side in a lightly oiled Le Creuset Heritage Rectangular Dish and sprinkle with the parmesan cheese.

  • 06

    Cover the dish loosely with a sheet of cling film, and leave in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes until doubled in size, the dough has filled the dish, and is almost touching the cling film.

  • 07

    Shortly before baking, preheat the oven to 180°C / Fan 160°C. Sprinkle the top of the bread with the pumpkin seeds if using, and bake for 35 - 40 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. You can serve this bread warm, straight from the dish or carefully lift it out of the dish and leave it to go cold on a wire rack. The bread is best served on the day it is made.

  • 08

    Cook's Notes: Short on time? Use about 6 tablespoons of good quality fresh pesto in place of the homemade pumpkin seed pesto. Sundried tomato pesto is also a good alternative.

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